At this morning’s mass in St. Martha’s House, the Pope urged faithful not to wander around searching for gurus to teach them about a salvation that is different from Jesus’. His salvation comes through mercy and forgiveness
Domenico Agasso jr
With the Extraordinary Synod on the family just a few days away, Pope Francis recalled that throughout history, it has always been “the ruling class that [has] close[d] the doors to the way in which God wants to save us.” Francis said this at this morning’s mass in St. Martha’s House, inviting faithful to believe in the salvation proclaimed by Jesus instead of “wander[ing] around looking for gurus to teach me another kind”.
Francis listed the attitudes of the ruling class in Jesus’ times: “They argue, they try to trick him and catch him out because they are resisting his offer of salvation. Jesus says to them, “I don’t understand you! You are like those children who say ‘We played the flute for you, and you did not dance; we sang a dirge, and you did not mourn’. What do you want?” They want, the Pope said, to save themselves and remain closed to the way of the Lord.” Salvation comes through mercy and forgiveness, not through sacrifice. “The drama of their resistance to salvation” is that they want to save themselves their “own way”. “How do I want to be saved?” “By a spirituality that is good for me, but static, self-explanatory and without any risk? Or by the divine, by Jesus who always surprises us, which always opens to us the doors to the mystery of God’s Omnipotence of, which is mercy and forgiveness?”
“All God wants is to save humanity but the problem is that humans often want to dictate the rules of salvation.” “This explains the intense exchanges Jesus has with the ruling class of his day,” Francis stressed in his homily.
Those who feel they are the chosen ones show a reluctance to be saved. “It is the ruling class that closes the doors to the way in which God wants to save us.” “The people of faith, however, understand and “accept” the salvation brought by Jesus. Their leaders, on the other hand, reduce salvation to the fulfilment of the 613 commandments they have created through their intellectual and theological fervour.” “They do not believe in mercy and forgiveness, they believe in the sacrifice.” “They believe in everything being settled, well organized, clear cut. This is the drama of resistance to salvation. “This drama exists within each and every one of us,” the Pope said.
The Gospel also describes this drama, this reluctance to be saved. “Jesus says to them, ‘I don’t understand you! You are like those children who say ‘We played the flute for you, and you did not dance; we sang a dirge, and you did not mourn. What do you want?’” To which they reply: “‘We want to make the rules for our own salvation!’”. “This is the dramatic paradox,” Francis said, “of so many of the Bible stories which culminate in the life of Jesus himself.”