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Pope to Curia: “Return to the Essentials”

Deacon Greg Kandra - published on 12/21/15

From Vatican Radio: 

Pope Francis has urged the Roman Curia to “return to the essentials” and follow a path of gratitude, conversion, renewal, penance and reconciliation as indicated by the Year of Mercy. The Pope was addressing members of the Curia gathered in the Vatican Clementine Hall for the annual Christmas Greetings. Please find below the full text of the Pope’s address to the Curia: Dear brothers and sisters, I am pleased to offer heartfelt good wishes for a blessed Christmas and a happy New Year to you and your co-workers, to the Papal Representatives, and in particular to those who in the past year have completed their service and retired.  Let us also remember all those who have gone home to God.  My thoughts and my gratitude go to you and to the members of your families. In our meeting in 2013, I wanted to stress two important and inseparable aspects of the work of the Curia: professionalism and service, and I offered Saint Joseph as a model to be imitated.  Then, last year, as a preparation for the sacrament of Reconciliation, we spoke of certain temptations or “maladies” – the “catalogue of curial diseases” – which could affect any Christian, curia, community, congregation, parish or ecclesial movement.  Diseases which call for prevention, vigilance, care and, sadly, in some cases, painful and prolonged interventions. Some of these diseases became evident in the course of the past year, causing no small pain to the entire body and harming many souls. It seems necessary to state what has been – and ever shall be – the object of sincere reflection and decisive provisions.  The reform will move forward with determination, clarity and firm resolve, since Ecclesia semper reformanda. Nonetheless, diseases and even scandals cannot obscure the efficiency of the services rendered to the Pope and to the entire Church by the Roman Curia, with great effort, responsibility, commitment and dedication, and this is a real source of consolation.  Saint Ignatius taught that “it is typical of the evil spirit to instil remorse, sadness and difficulties, and to cause needless worry so as to prevent us from going forward; instead, it is typical of the good spirit to instil courage and energy, consolations and tears, inspirations and serenity, and to lessen and remove every difficulty so as to make us advance on the path of goodness.” It would be a grave injustice not to express heartfelt gratitude and needed encouragement to all those good and honest men and women in the Curia who work with dedication, devotion, fidelity and professionalism, offering to the Church and the Successor of Peter the assurance of their solidarity and obedience, as well as their constant prayers. Moreover, cases of resistance, difficulties and failures on the part of individuals and ministers are so many lessons and opportunities for growth, and never for discouragement.  They are opportunities for returning to the essentials, which means being ever more conscious of ourselves, of God and our neighbours, of the sensus Ecclesiae and the sensus fidei. It is about this return to essentials that I wish to speak today, just a few days after the Church’s inauguration of the pilgrimage of the Holy Year of Mercy, a Year which represents for her and for all of us a pressing summons to gratitude, conversion, renewal, penance and reconciliation.

He elaborates on all these themes at this link. 

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