Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Returning to Our Personal Galilee

Return to the moment of discovery

Pope Francis has urged Catholics across the globe to rediscover their personal 'Galilee' - that moment when they first experienced a personal encounter with Jesus Christ - in his homily at the Easter Vigil celebration this weekend.

'To return to Galilee means above all to return to that blazing light with which God's grace touched me at the start of the journey', he said.

'From that flame I can light a fire for today and every day, and bring heat and light to my brothers and sisters. That flame ignites a humble joy, a joy which sorry and distress cannot dismay, a good, gentle joy.'

He asked the thousands gathered if they remembered their own Galilee, or had they gone off on roads and paths that made them forget it?

'Lord, help me: tell me what my Galilee is', he prayed. 'For you know that I want to return there to encounter you and to let myself be embraced by your mercy.'

In his Easter message, the Pope prayed for peace, calling for an end to conflicts in the Ukraine, Syria and Nigeria.

The Pope also drew worldwide interest on Holy Thursday when he celebrated Mass at a rehabilitation facility on the outskirts of Rome.

Similar to Holy Thursday last year when he washed the feet of young people in detention, the Pope washed the feet of four women and eight men who are living with disabilities.

The patients ranged in ages from 16 to 86, nine of the 12 were Italian, one was a Muslim from Libya, one was a woman from Ethiopia and one young man was from Cape Verde.

Meanwhile, at a Good Friday Stations of the Cross service at the Colosseum, the Pope listened as meditations were read out reflecting on the pain and suffering endured by the marginalised in our communities.

One meditation spoke of 'all those wrongs which created the economic crisis and its grave social consequences: job insecurity, unemployment, dismissals, an economy that rules rather than serves, financial speculation, suicide among business owners, corruption and usury, the loss of local industry'.

The cross was carried between the 14 stations by pairs of immigrants, prisoners, homeless, elderly, women, disabled, former drug addicts and others.

From Province Express (The Australian Jesuits)

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