2013-09-13 Vatican Radio(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis received the participants in the Consultation of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem on Friday afternoon. The gathering of members of the centuries-old charitable service organisation takes place once every five years. Its purpose is to reflect on the situation of the Catholic community in the Holy Land, evaluate the Order’s various initiatives, address questions of governance and administration, and chart a course for future work. Listen to our report:
In his remarks to the participants, Pope Francis returned to the three basic elements of Christian life: journeying, building, professing – which served as the keystones of his homily at the close of the conclave that elected him and which continue to be major themes of his Pontificate. “Your journey,” said the Holy Father to his guests, “is in history - in a world where the boundaries are ever-expanding, many barriers fall and our paths are tied ever more closely to that of others.” He encouraged the knights to be true to their tradition of faithful, compassionate and loving service, as they work to build a brighter future for and with the struggling Christians of the Holy Land.
“However,” said Pope Francis, “your journeying in order to build is born of [your] professing the faith ever more profoundly, it grows from ongoing efforts to nourish your spiritual life, from a lifelong Christian formation for an ever more authentic and coherent Christian life.”
“Believe in the redemptive power of the Cross and the Resurrection,” said Pope Francis, “in order to offer hope and peace. In a particular way, the Land of Jesus has so much need of it! Faith does not distance us from the responsibilities that we all are called to assume – on the contrary, it provokes and pushes us toward a concrete commitment to work with a view to a better society.”