The news these days seems filled with those in need of mercy. So many people hurting one another and sometimes themselves. In this blog, we talk about God in our lives and how we can easily miss what is the main thing. And our world is filled with people who seem closed off to God and are totally unaware of any real spiritual meaning in life. No wonder there is so much hate and destruction in our midst.
Today, Pope Francis has broadened the definition of the upcoming Jubilee Year of Mercy and has put forth ways to allow that mercy to flow more easily. Instead of simply restating the contents of the letter and offering analysis, I have provided links below so you can read it yourself and also read the Catholic News Service report. Pope Francis is setting the stage for a year of true jubilee, where people will be set free of their chains and shackles and will be given the chance to truly live anew in Jesus Christ.
As good stewards we must consider how we will not only seek mercy for ourselves in this extraordinary time, but also how we will be instruments of mercy to those around us. Who is in need of your forgiveness? Who needs to hear you speak about God’s mercy for them? Who do you know who has been suffering in isolation due to the emotional effects of abortion? Who do you know who lives their life in fear due to selfish decisions of the past?
Also, we must be instruments of reconciliation in our Church. How can we bring an end to the wide divisions based on liturgical expression? How can we assist ethnic communities in the Body of Christ in their effort to gain respect and an equitable place at the table? What can we do to build bridges so that parish and parish school communities are no longer separate but indeed one? Who do we know that has fallen away that we can invite back to Church in love?
The Jubilee Year of Mercy has yet to begin. However, even though I haven’t spoken to the Pope personally yet, I am pretty sure he would encourage us to begin profound works of mercy NOW. In fact, the Pope’s boss (you know who) I believe is counting us to begin as soon as possible.
Pope Francis’ Letter HERE
CNS Story HERE