Francis: “Every act of forgiveness repairs the house of cracks”

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The Pope returns to the subject of family

Francis: “Every act of forgiveness repairs the house of cracks”

By Iacopo Scaramuzzi

At the General Audience, on Wednesday October 4, Francis spoke again about the Synod on the Family, which he described as a “moment of grace”, adding that he needs to “meditate” on the concluding document presented to him.

“Every act of forgiveness repairs the house of cracks and strengthens its walls”. At today’s General Audience, Pope Francis returned to the subject of the October Synod on the Family, a “moment of grace” (the Pope did not specify whether he will write an Apostolic Exhortation as he said: “I must mediate [on the concluding text] myself”) and without making any reference to the scandal which hit the Vatican in recent days, he focused his catechesis on forgiveness: “If we learn to immediately apologize and seek mutual forgiveness, healing the wounds, the marriage is strengthened, and the family home becomes more and more solid, resisting the shock of our cruelties, great and small.”

The recent Synod Assembly “was a moment of grace,” Francis said. “At the end of it, the Synod Fathers delivered a text to me with their conclusions. I wanted this text to be published, in order to involve everyone in the work we have carried out together over the past two years. This is not the time to go into these conclusions as I have to meditate on them myself.”

In the meantime, “life goes on, especially the life of families!” the Pope said. “You, dear families, are always on a journey. You continuously fill the pages of concrete life with the beauty of the Gospel of the family. In a world that can sometimes seem barren in terms of life and love, you are daily expressions of the great gift of marriage and family. "Today, I would like to underline this point: that the family is a great training ground for mutual gifting and forgiveness, without which no love can last, without the gifting oneself and forgiveness love does not stay, it does not last !” Recalling the Our Father, the Pope said; “You cannot live without forgiving, or at least you cannot live well, especially in the family. Every day we do each other wrong. We must take into account these mistakes, due to our fragility and our selfishness. But what is required of us now it is to heal the wounds that we create, immediately re-weave the threads that break in the family. If we wait too long, everything becomes more difficult. And there's a simple secret to healing wounds and easing accusations: never end the day without saying sorry, without making peace between husband and wife, between parents and children, brothers and sisters in-law and with mothers-in-law...! If we learn to immediately apologize and seek mutual forgiveness, healing the wounds, the marriage is strengthened, and the family home becomes more and more solid, resisting the shock of our cruelties, great and small, and that is why long speeches are not necessary, just a caress and everything starts again, but never end the day at war, understand ?!”

"If we learn to live as a family,” Francis went on to say, “we do it outside, wherever we are. It is easy to be skeptical about this. Many - even Christians – think it is an exaggeration. They say: yes, they are beautiful words, but it is impossible to put them into practice. But thank God that this is not so. In fact, it is by receiving forgiveness from God that we, in turn, are able to forgive others. This is why Jesus makes us repeat these words every time we recite the Lord's Prayer, that is, every day. And it is essential that, in a sometimes ruthless society, there are places, such as the family, where we learn to forgive one another. The Synod has revived our hopes on this: the ability to forgive and to forgive is part of the vocation and mission of the family. The practice of forgiveness not only saves families from the division, but enables them to help society be less poor and cruel. Yes, every act of forgiveness repairs the house of cracks and strengthens its walls. The Church, dear families, is always there by your side to help you build your house on the rock of which Jesus spoke.”

“The words of the Gospel (“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven”), are strong words no doubt, which aim to shake us and call us to conversion. I assure you, dear families, that if you are able to walk with greater determination on the path of the Beatitudes, learning and teaching how to forgive each other, in the great family of the Church the ability to bear witness to the renewing power of God's forgiveness will grow. In contrast, we may be beautiful preachers, and maybe even rout some devils, but in the end the Lord will not recognize us as his disciples,” Francis said, concluding his catechesis by calling on all faithful present to recite the Our Father together.

Wed, 11/04/2015 - 22:43
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