We are springtime people, not autumn people, Francis suggests at Wednesday audience
Pigs always walk around with their heads down, Pope Francis said today, but a Christian can’t walk around like this. We believe in a God of novelties, who is guiding us to an eternity with him, so we must walk with our sights set on the horizon.
This was the image the pope used in this morning’s general audience, as he continued with his reflections on Christian hope.
“Am I a springtime person, awaiting the sun, awaiting Jesus, or an autumn person, with my head cast down, bitter, with a pickled pepper (peperoncini all’aceto) face?” Francis invited the chuckling audience to ask themselves.
There are people who see so many calamities and claim that life has no meaning, he said, but “we Christians don’t believe this … We are people more of spring than autumn.”
Christian hope, the Holy Father said, is based on “faith in God who always creates novelty in human life, in history and in the cosmos.”
“Novelty and surprise,” he said, illustrating the passage from Revelation, “Behold, I make all things new.”
Referring to pilgrims from Barcelona and from Congo, Pope Francis recognized the great weight of evil in the world.
But he suggested meditating on the text from Revelation, from Chapter 21, after having read the headlines and the front pages. “Try to bring to mind the faces of the children afraid of war, the cry of suffering mothers, the broken dreams of so many youth, the refugees who confront such terrible voyages, exploitation … Life unfortunately also is this. Sometimes it could be said that it is especially this …”
“But there is a Father crying with tears of infinite mercy for his children,” he said. “A Father who awaits us to console us, because he knows our suffering and he has prepared us a different kind of future.”
The pope insisted that this is “the great vision of Christian hope,” and that God “has created us because he wants us to be happy. God is working to rescue us.”
“We believe and we know that death and hate are not the last words spoken over the parable of human existence. To be Christian implies a new perspective: a gaze full of hope.”
He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there shall be no more death or mourning, wailing or pain, [for] the old order has passed away.” The one who sat on the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new.”Revelation 21:4-5
You can read a provisional translation of the full text of today’s audience here.