The Vatican

Pope Francis: "We cannot confine faith within the walls of temples".

Pope Francis presided at the Holy Mass of the Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord, the penultimate of the great celebrations of this Christmas Week, which was marked by the farewell to Benedict XVI.

Maria José Atienza-January 6, 2023-Reading time: 2 minutes
pope francis epiphany

St. Peter's Basilica has once again become the epicenter of the life of the Church in Rome. Together with bishops and priests and some 5,000 faithful, Pope Francis presided at the Holy Mass for the Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord. A celebration in which Pope Francis compared the life of faith with the journey of the Magi of the East.

The Pope wanted to begin his words by pointing out how "faith is not born of our merits or of theoretical reasoning, but is a gift of God", a grace of God that awakens in us a "restlessness that keeps us awake; when we allow ourselves to be questioned, when we are not satisfied with the tranquility of our habits, but we put it on the line".

The personal response is to set out on the path of the magi who, taking their risks, leave their tranquillity to seek God. Along these lines, the Pope warned against the "tranquilizers of the soul," which are multiplying today and which appear as "substitutes to sedate our restlessness and extinguish those questions, from the products of consumerism to the seductions of pleasure, from sensationalist debates to the idolatry of well-being."

Thus the Pope pointed out the first two points that we can learn from the attitude of the Magi: first, the restlessness of the questions. Secondly, the risk of the path on which we find God.

This attitude of journey, of interior questioning and sincere search for God in spite of renouncing comforts, "it is useless to activate ourselves pastorally if we do not put Jesus at the center and adore him", is what describes the life of faith, the Pope continued, "without a continuous journey and constant dialogue with the Lord, without listening to the Word, without perseverance, it is not possible to grow. Faith, if it remains static, does not grow; we cannot reduce it to a mere personal devotion or confine it within the walls of the temples, but it is necessary to manifest it".

The Pope concluded his words with a call to "adore God and not our self; let us adore God so as not to bow down to the things that happen or to the seductive and empty logics of evil."

The celebration followed its usual course ending with the adoration of the image of the Child Jesus, typical of this Christmas season.

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