Pastoral Notes 12th January 2014

Pope Francis has amazed many by his capacity to inspire and attract people to Christ.  Here is an extract from ‘The Joy of the Gospel’ which gives us a sense of the mind behind the voice.  He draws on both John XXIII and John Paul II’s thinking.

“Today’s vast and rapid cultural changes demand that we constantly seek ways of expressing unchanging truths in a language which brings out their abiding newness.  ‘The deposit of the faith is one thing … the way it is expressed is another’.  There are times when the faithful, in listening to completely orthodox language, take away something alien to the authentic Gospel of Jesus Christ, because that language is alien to their own way of speaking to and understanding one another.  With the holy intent of communicating the truth about God and humanity, we sometimes give them a false god or a human ideal which is not really Christian.  In this way, we hold fast to a formulation while failing to convey its substance.  This is the greatest danger.  Let us never forget that ‘the expression of truth can take different forms.  The renewal of these forms of expression becomes necessary for the sake of transmitting to the people of today the Gospel message in its unchanging meaning’ “

Francis: Evangelii Gaudium. Apostolic Exhortation. IV 41.