A Crisis Reveals What is in our Hearts
In these Advent days, we are filled with hope in preparation for the two-fold coming of Christ: the historical Lord in the Child at Christmas and our personal meeting of the Lord at the “2nd coming”– whether that “end-time” be at our own deaths or our internal awakening to Christ’s eternal presence in our lives, here and now. Pope Francis shares what he finds as key to preparation for this “coming”- “letting your minds and heart overflow with people in conflict, people in suffering”.
“You see faces looking for life and love in the reality of each person, of each people. You see hope written in the story of every nation, glorious because it’s a story of daily struggle, of lives broken in self-sacrifice. So rather than overwhelm you, it invites you to ponder and to respond with hope. These are moments in life that can be ripe for change and conversion…a crisis that reveals what is in our hearts… what is revealed is what needs to change: our lack of internal freedom, the idols we have been serving, the ideologies we have tried to live by, the relationships we have neglected.”
“In lockdown I’ve often gone in prayer to those who sought all means to save the lives of others. So many of the nurses, doctors and caregivers paid that price of love, together with priests, and religious and ordinary people whose vocations were service. We return their love by grieving for them and honoring them… They are the antibodies to the virus of indifference. They remind us that our lives are a gift and we grow by giving of ourselves, not preserving ourselves but losing ourselves in service.”
“To come out of this crisis better, we have to recover the knowledge that as a people we have a shared destination. The pandemic has reminded us that no one is saved alone. What ties us to one another is what we commonly call solidarity. Solidarity is more than acts of generosity, important as they are; it is the call to embrace the reality that we are bound by bonds of reciprocity. On this solid foundation we can build a better, different, human future.”
- From the New York Times Opinion Article Essay on November 26th, 2020, titled Pope Francis: A Crisis Reveals What Is in Our Hearts. -an essay adapted from his new book “Let Us Dream: The Path to a Better Future,” with Austen Ivereigh.