In his catechesis last week Saturday which focused on the relationship between Mission and Mercy, the first of a series of special Jubilee audiences which will be held each Saturday a month till Nov. 20, 2016 – the end of the Jubilee year with the Solemnity of Christ the King.
Pope Francis said: “The mercy we receive from the Father is not given to us as private consolation but makes us tools so that others can receive the same gift.
“There is a wonderful interplay between mercy and mission. Living mercy makes us missionaries of mercy, and being missionaries allows us to grow ever more in the mercy of God,” he said.
“Therefore, we take our Christian lives seriously, and we should strive to be faithful, for only in this way can the Gospel can touch the hearts of people and open them to receive the grace of love, to receive this great mercy of God which welcomes everyone,” he continued.
The Holy Year opened on 8 December 2015, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception. It will close Nov. 20, 2016 with the Solemnity of Christ the King.
The Pope, reiterating the great teaching offered by Saint John Paul II said that the “Church lives an authentic life when she professes and proclaims mercy and when she brings people close to the sources of mercy.”
Laying emphasis on why Christians should be missionaries, the Pope said we tend to want to share the good things in our lives. When we receive good news, or when we live a good experience, it is natural that we feel the need to share it with others,” he said.
“We feel within us that we can not hold back the joy that was given to us and we want to expand it, it is this very joy which “drives us to communicate” what we have received, and the same applies when we encounter the Lord, the pontiff said: “the joy of this encounter, of his mercy, communicating the mercy of the Lord.”
“In fact, he said, the concrete sign that we have really met Jesus is the joy we feel when conveying this to others.”
“Meeting Jesus equals to meeting with his love,” the Pope said. “This love transforms us and enables us to pass on to others the strength that it gives to us,” he added.
The missionaries of Mercy will be commissioned formally by the Pontiff at St. Peter’s Basilica and will be sent out Feb. 10, on the celebration of the Ash Wednesday.