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Pope Francis: The joy of the Christian does not anesthetize pain

2016-05-06

In his homily at Casa Santa Marta, the Pope explained what Christian joy consists of. He said it is not like the laughter at a carnival; it includes hope.

POPE FRANCIS
"This is what joy and hope together can have on our lives, when we are facing tribulations, when we have problems, when we are suffering.  It is not an anesthetic. Pain is pain, but if lived through with joy and hope it will open the door for you to the joy of a new fruit. This image of the Lord should give us great hope amidst our difficulties: difficulties that often are awful, horrible difficulties that can even make us doubt our faith.”

Pope Francis said that as a hopeless joy is simply fun, joyless hope, is only healthy optimism.

EXCERPTS FROM PAPAL HOMILY
(Source: Vatican Radio)

"This is (the impact of) what joy and hope together can have on our lives, when we are facing tribulations, when we have problems, when we are suffering.  It is not an anesthesia.  Pain is pain but if lived through with joy and hope it will open the door for you to the joy of a new being. This image of the Lord should give us great hope amidst our difficulties: difficulties that often are awful, horrible difficulties that can even make us doubt our faith… But with joy and hope we journey forward because after this tempest  a new man arrives, just like with a woman giving birth. And Jesus tells us that this is a lasting joy and hope that will not go away.”

"A joy without hope is just enjoyment, a temporary happiness.  A hope without joy is not hope and doesn’t extend beyond a healthy optimism. Joy and hope always journey together and both of them create this explosion that the Church in her liturgy almost cries out -- allow me to say the word -- without shame: ‘Rejoice for your Church!, Rejoice – without  formality.  Because when there is a strong joy, there’s no formality, just joy.”

"Joy strengthens hope and hope blooms amidst joy. And we go forward like this. But both of these Christian virtues, along with the attitude that the Church seeks to give them, show us the way to open out (towards others). Joyful people do not stay closed in on themselves: hope makes you open outwards, it is just like an anchor on the shore of heaven that pulls us up and out. Open out from ourselves, with joy and hope.”