Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Pope Francis, Spiritual Life, & Future Priests

On Jan. 25 Pope Francis addressed a group of seminarians studying here in Rome. Reading through the text there were a couple points that jumped out at me which I would like to share.

Early on in the discourse, he said “you also are preparing ourselves to follow the impulse of the Spirit, to be the ‘future of the church’ according to God’s heart; not according to the preferences of each one or the fashions of the moment, but as the proclamation of the Gospel requires. To prepare oneself well one must work in depth, but above all one must undergo an interior conversion, which daily roots the ministry in Jesus first call, and revives it in a personal relation with him…”

I think that these words serve as an apt reminder of what is at the core of the spiritual life, namely following the inspirations of the Holy Spirit. He also reminds us that whatever our vacation, whatever walk of life I am following, it is essential not to forget my experience of God’s call in my life. That goes for husbands and wives just as much as it goes for priests, seminarians, and religious. Remembering this initial call entails, as the Pope says, a daily, interior conversion which revives my personal relationship with Jesus. The Pope shared these remarks on the Feast of the conversion of Saint Paul, which provides a perfect visual of this experience.

Later on, the Pope said that a pastor can only proclaim the words of life “if he makes of his own life a constant dialogue with the Word of God, or, better, with God who speaks to us.” This is nothing other then a development of that relationship spoken of above.

The whole discourse was not very long and can be read in a short amount of time. The whole your father also touched on other points of interest and if you would like to read it for yourself you can find it in its entirety here: