The Vatican

Congratulations to the Roman Curia: "Light is always stronger than darkness".

In his address to the cardinals and collaborators, the Pope expressed his disgust for the drama of child abuse and the definitive commitment to confront it seriously and promptly.

Giovanni Tridente-January 10, 2019-Reading time: 3 minutes

"Light is always stronger than darkness.". It was from this observation that Pope Francis addressed this year's reflection to all those who serve in the Roman Curia, from cardinals to collaborators in the nunciatures, on the occasion of the exchange of Christmas greetings.

The very birth of Jesus, which took place in a socio-political context fraught with tension and darkness, summarizes the divine logic that does not stop in the face of evil, but radically transforms it into good, giving Salvation to all men, the Pope explained.

Francis then mentioned the difficult moments that have characterized the Church's last year, "onslaught by storms and hurricanes". and by the consequent loss of confidence of some who have ended up abandoning it; others who, out of fear, or for the sake of other ends, have tried to strike at it; and still others who have been satisfied with these tensions. Nevertheless, the Pope reminded us, there are very many who continue to cling to it in the certainty that "the power of hell will not defeat it".

Many are the "afflictions" that characterize the pilgrimage of the Bride of Christ in the world. Her first thought was directed to immigrants, victims of fear and prejudice, surrounded by so many "afflictions". "inhumanity and brutality". He then spoke of the new martyrs, of so many persecuted, marginalized and discriminated Christians, who in spite of everything, are still suffering from the same fate as their brothers and sisters. "they continue to bravely embrace death so as not to deny Christ".. Thank God there are "numerous good Samaritans"youth, young people, families, charitable and volunteer movements.

The testimony of the latter, unfortunately, cannot hide the infidelity of some sons and ministers of the Church, particularly responsible for "abuses of power, conscience and sex".. And this is the great uncovered nerve, which the Pope addressed without half-measures in his speech. "Also today there are 'anointed of the Lord,' consecrated men, who abuse the weak, using their moral power and persuasion. They commit abominations and continue to exercise their ministry as if nothing had happened.". These are people who "they do not fear God or his judgment, they only fear being found out and unmasked".and by doing so "tear the body of the Church apart".causing scandals and discrediting its mission of salvation.

Very hard words, pronounced with a lump in the throat, precisely because it is a curse. "that cries out the vengeance of the Lord."The Church does not forget the suffering of the many victims. In the face of these abominable acts, the Church will do everything to bring to justice those who have committed them and will always - unlike in the past - face these cases seriously and promptly, making use of experts and trying to transform mistakes into opportunities. The goal is to eradicate this evil not only from the Church, but also from society. The Pope then launched an appeal to abusers: "Repent and surrender yourselves to human righteousness, and prepare yourselves for divine righteousness.".

Among other afflictions, that of the infidelity of those who "betray their vocation, their oath, their mission, their consecration to God and to the Church", sowing tares, division and confusion, like modern Judas Iscariots who sell themselves for thirty pieces of silver.
The last part of Francis' speech was dedicated to the joys of the past year, from the Synod on youth, to the steps taken in the reform of the Roman Curia, to the new Blesseds and Saints. "that adorn the face of the Church and radiate hope, faith and light."among them the 19 martyrs of Algeria.

It is also a reason to rejoice "the great number of consecrated persons, of bishops and priests, who daily live their vocation in fidelity, silence, holiness and self-denial.". With their testimony of faith, love and charity "illuminate the darkness of humanity"working on behalf of the poor, the oppressed and the last.

To bring light - Pope Francis concluded - we must be aware of the darkness, be vigilant and watchful with the will to continually purify ourselves, humbly recognizing our mistakes in order to correct them, rising from our falls and opening our hearts to the only true light, Jesus Christ, who can transform the darkness and overcome evil.

It is Christmas, in fact, which gives "the certainty that the Church will emerge from these tribulations even more beautiful, purified and splendid".

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