Francis has spoken out against the theory of gender, something he has stated as
being the “great enemy of marriage today”. The pope, speaking to a group of religious men and women in Tbilisi,
Georgia, said: “Today, there is a global war trying to destroy marriage…they
don’t destroy it with weapons, but with ideas. It’s certain ideological ways of thinking that are destroying it…we have
to defend ourselves from ideological colonisation.”
pontiff has often spoken about ideological colonisation and gender theory and
the dangers they pose to society.
Pope Francis heard Confessions in the days leading up to the Mass
Pope Francis has given a lesson in love and freedom during
his homily at the Jubilee Mass for Young People in Rome.
The Pope, speaking to thousands of youth in St Peter’s
Square, said that Jesus himself declared that Christians would be known “by the
way they love one another.” The Pope
continued saying, “love, in other words, is the Christian’s identity card.”
The Pope then tackled the meaning of love, stating that love
is something you give.
From today’s Gospel:
‘Simon Peter said, ‘Lord, where are you going?’ Jesus
replied, ‘Where I am going you cannot follow me now; you will follow me later.’
Peter said to him, ‘Why can’t I follow you now? I will lay down my life for
you.’ ‘Lay down your life for me?’ answered Jesus. ‘I tell you most solemnly,
before the cock crows you will have disowned me three times.’’
This small passage from today’s Gospel follows on nicely
from our reflection on yesterday’s Gospel when we compared the simple love Mary
had for Jesus in needing to be close to him with Martha’s need to be on the go.
Gospel (John 8:1-11):
to the Mount of Olives. At daybreak he appeared in the Temple again; and as all
the people came to him, he sat down and began to teach them.
The scribes and Pharisees brought a woman along who had been
caught committing adultery; and making her stand there in full view of
everybody, they said to Jesus, ‘Master, this woman was caught in the very act
of committing adultery, and Moses has ordered us in the Law to condemn women
like this to death by stoning. What have you to say?
This guy really, really loves you!
Sunday’s Second Reading (Hebrews 4:14-16):
'Since in Jesus, the Son of God, we have the supreme high priest who has gone through to the highest heaven, we must never let go of the faith that we have professed. For it is not as if we had a high priest who was incapable of feeling our weaknesses with us; but we have one who has been tempted in every way that we are, though he is without sin.
Let us be confident, then, in approaching the throne of grace, that we shall have mercy from him and find grace when we are in need of help.
Following Jesus will satisfy the longings of our heart
First Reading (Daniel 7:9-10,13-14):
'As I watched:
Thrones were set in place
and one of great age took his seat.
His robe was white as snow,
the hair of his head as pure as wool.
His throne was a blaze of flames,
its wheels were a burning fire.
A stream of fire poured out,
issuing from his presence.
A thousand thousand waited on him,
ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him.
A court was held
and the books were opened.
And I saw, coming on the clouds of heaven,
We must take the narrow path to Christ
Today’s First Reading (1 Timothy 6:2-12):
‘This is what you are to teach the brothers to believe and persuade them to do. Anyone who teaches anything different, and does not keep to the sound teaching which is that of our Lord Jesus Christ, the doctrine which is in accordance with true religion, is simply ignorant and must be full of self-conceit – with a craze for questioning everything and arguing about words. All that can come of this is jealousy, contention, abuse and wicked mistrust of one another; and unending disputes by people who are neither rational nor informed and imagine that religion is a way of making a profit.
It’s a pretty basic point: you can’t be Christian unless you are prepared to forgive. It’s something that is abundantly clear in Christ’s teaching and we can be left in no doubt that we are all expected to forgive one another if we are to be true to Jesus.
Yet this call is seemingly never put into practice. We are often prepared to talk the talk when it comes to forgiveness, but we are rarely prepared to walk the walk. It is in this sense that the Pope’s words are timely.
From Sunday’s First Reading (Acts 3:13-15,17-19):
‘Now you must repent and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out.’
Peter, in the short passage from Sunday’s first reading, gives a clear and incredibly simple instruction to the people who put Christ to death. He tells them to repent of their sins and turn to God; and the result of this according to Peter? Their sins will no longer exist. It’s very simple stuff! It's also incredibly merciful when you consider what the people did to Jesus; how they ridiculed him, abused him, spat on him and beat him.