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Monday 10 May 2021

Restless heart The problem of the Church

The problem of the Church

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The real problem of the Church it is not the controversy over the IOR, about pedophile priests, or other such matters. The real problem it is the formation to the faith of the laity. In theory this is nothing new: the central message of Vatican Council II is the universal call to holiness. In other words, the Council reiterated that not only priests, monks, friars, nuns but all the baptized are called to holiness.

Certainly, from the conclusion of the Council to the present day, many initiatives and realities have appeared which have as their aim the formation of the laity. Some of these realities originated before the Council, just think of Opus Dei, Communion and Liberation, the Focolarini, the Community of Sant'Egidio and so on. Others were born or raised later, such as the Renewal of the Spirit, the Neocatechumenals and, recently, Nuovi Orizzonti by Chiara Amirante, a founder who was born even after the conclusion of the Council.

the real problem of the church
The real problem of the church is the formation of the laity in faith

However in the common mentality the idea that Baptism and Confirmation are truly a perspective of holiness still remains distant. It is still thought that the good Christian is one who feels the duty to go to Mass on Sunday, period and that's it.

Providence provides and is the grace of God to spread the fire of love for Jesus, who loved us first and made it clear to us that in Heaven we do not have a Controller but a Father, or rather a father, who he follows us with a pedagogy which we often fail to interpret, made of pain and sweetness, but which is better than the affectionate fathers of this land. But Providence also requires the collaboration of us mortals. "As the Father sent me, so I send you" says Jesus to his disciples and there is no shortage of parables that invite us to watch and commit ourselves: the house on the rock and not on the sand, the lamps equipped with the oil that cannot be purchased at the last moment, the talents that must be engaged and made to bear fruit. The call of Jesus is a call to the alarm clock.

At the same time, Jesus invites us not to worry too much: "don't worry" he says, rather look at the birds of the sky and the flowers of the fields: Heavenly Father takes care of feeding them. So there is the apparent paradox that the Christian on the one hand is an envoy from God and on the other is like a child who abandons himself to the security of having a Father who thinks about it. Don't worry ...

It is no small task because on the one hand it is necessary to have the strength of the martyrs and the awareness of the great saints and on the other a faith that does not worry about the forces opposed to the Gospel message, forces that seem gigantic. I have to live calm and confident. Because? Because I trust my father God.

A Neapolitan priest, who died in the smell of holiness and venerated not only in Naples, Don Dolindo Ruotolo, has spread a message received from Jesus:

Why do you get confused by getting excited? Leave the care of your things to me and everything will calm down. In truth I tell you that every act of true, blind, complete abandonment in me, produces the effect you desire and resolves the thorny situations ... If you really tell me: "your will be done", which is the same as saying: " think about it ”, I intervene with all my omnipotence, and solve the most closed situations.

In my mind this coexistence between commitment and abandonment does not end with the assent of a moment, because my mood is changeable. Here I have to focus on a central idea: my spirit needs a continuous nourishment as it happens for my body. Normally I need breakfast, lunch and dinner and sometimes even a snack between them. Well the same happens for my soul. I need a series of short appointments with God every day that serve as my food. The Spirit blows where he wants Jesus says, but one thing is certain: if I don't keep the windows open the Spirit cannot enter. Outside of metaphor, I must confess to myself periodically, that I receive Jesus in the Eucharist as often as possible, that I keep my Christian culture alive with appropriate readings (especially of the Gospels), that I cultivate devotion to Our Lady, that I dedicate some time to pray face to face with God ... Eh but what an exaggeration! This is the point. The saints did not become so by lazing and dispersing their attention, they became so by praying and working.

If the Church can be formed by Christians who live like this, serene and committed, well fed spiritually, then what St. Augustine said will happen: "If the Christians were truly Christian there would be no pagan". Jesus think about it ...

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