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Rome Reports

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General Audience: Meekness manifests itself when one is attacked, offended

Pope Francis stopped to greet the many pilgrims who came to his General Audience in Paul VI Audience Hall. He read banners and letters prepared for him and was even given flowers.  

In his catechesis, he reflected on the third beatitude, Blessed are the Meek. He explained the meek are those who are sweet, gentle and avoid violence. 

Meekness manifests itself in moments of conflict, you see how you react to a hostile situation. Anyone might seem meek when everything is quiet, but how they react 'under pressure,' if he is attacked, offended, or faces aggression?

He said that meekness and possession of land are related, but instead of conquering land, the Gospel says the people of God “inherit the land.”

That land is a promise and a gift for the people of God, and becomes a sign of something much larger than a simple territory. There is a 'land' – as a play on words - which is Heaven. That means the 'land' toward which we walk.

He said the meek are not cowards, but rather safeguards his inheritance courageously, seeking God.

A meek person is not only accommodating, but is the disciple of Christ who has learned to defend 'his other land.' He defends his peace, defends his relationship with God and his gifts, preserving mercy, fraternity, trust and hope.

Pope Francis thus said the meek are trustworthy, create relationships with others and are merciful toward their neighbor, instead of revengeful. They understand in their core that they are children of God.

Melissa Butz