MORNING MEDITATION IN THE CHAPEL OF THE
No gossip, no fear
Saturday, 13 April 2013
(by L'Osservatore Romano, Weekly ed. in English, n.
16, 17 April 2013)
If you want to solve life’s problems you have to look reality in
the face. Like the goalkeeper of a football team, you have to be ready to catch
the ball from whatever side it comes. And you have to do this resisting fear or
the temptation to complain, because Jesus is always beside us. Pope Francis said
this at morning Mass on Saturday, 13 April, in the Chapel of the Domus Sanctae
Present were Domenico Giani, Director of Vatican Security
Services and Civil Protection, with his relatives, officers of the Gendarmes
Corps and of the Fire Brigade, Mons. Alfred Xuereb’s mother and several disabled
people who were taking part in a Vatican congress.
In the passage from the Acts of the Apostles (6:1-7), proclaimed
in the First Reading, “there is”, the Pope explained — a piece of the history of
the Church’s early days: the Church was growing, the number of disciples was
increasing”, but “it was at this very moment that the problems arose”. Indeed,
“those who spoke Greek murmured against those who spoke the Hebrew language
because their widows were neglected in the daily distribution. “Life”, he
continued, “was not always calm and beautiful”, and “the first thing they do is
to murmur, to gossip about each other: “But look, the thing is …”. But this does
not lead to any solution”.
“The Apostles”, on the contrary, he said, “with the help of the
Holy Spirit, reacted well. They summoned the group and spoke to them. This is
the first step: when there are difficulties, it is necessary to examine them
closely, to take them up and to talk about them. Never hide them. Life is like
this. Life must be taken as it comes, not as we would like it to come”. “It is”,
the Pope said, using an effective metaphor that is dear to him “a little like
the goalkeeper of the team, isn't it? He grabs the ball wherever it comes from.
This is the reality”. Thus the Apostles “spoke to each other and came up with a
lovely proposal, a revolutionary proposal, for they said: “but we are the
Apostles, those who Jesus chose”. However, that was not enough. They realized
that their first duty was to pray and to serve the Word. “And as for the daily
assistance to widows, we must do something else”. This is “what the deacons
decided to do”.
Pope Francis ended his homily with an invitation: ask “the Lord
for this grace — to have no fear”, to be able “to take life as it comes and to
try to solve problems as the Apostles did, and to seek the encounter with Jesus
who is always beside us, also at life’s bleakest moments”.