MORNING MEDITATION IN THE CHAPEL OF THE
Real Christian humility
Friday, 14 June 2013
(by L'Osservatore Romano, Weekly ed. in English, n.
25, 19 June 2013)
without the ability to publicly acknowledge your sins and your own human
frailty, you cannot attain salvation nor proclaim Christ, nor pretend to be his
witness. Pope Francis invited everyone to reflect on the theme of Christian
humility during his homily at Mass on Friday morning, 14 June, in the Chapel of
the Domus Sanctae Marthae. Concelebrating with him among others were Cardinal
Giuseppe Bertello, President of the Governorate, and Cardinal Mauro Piacenza,
Prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy. Also present were officials and
employees from the Congregation. Accompanying Cardinal Bertello were relatives
of the late Archbishop Ubaldo Calabresi, who was Apostolic Nuncio to Argentina
for many years. During the prayers of the faithful, the Holy Father asked for
prayers for the Archbishop to whom he was bound by a deep friendship.
The day’s readings from the Second Letter of Paul to the Corinthians (4:7-15)
and the Gospel of Matthew (5:27-32) were at the centre of the reflection of the
Pope, who linked the image of the “beauty of Jesus, of the power of Jesus, and
of the salvation that Jesus brings us”, which the Apostle Paul speaks of, with
that of the “earthen vessels” in which the treasure of faith is contained.
Christians are like clay vases because they are weak, since they are sinners.
Nevertheless, the Pope said, between “us poor, earthen vessels” and “the power
of Jesus Christ” is a dialogue; it is the “dialogue of salvation”. He warned
however that when this dialogue assumes the tone of self- justification, it
means that something is not working and that there is no salvation. The humility
of a Christian is that of one who follows the path pointed out by the Apostle.
“We must really recognize our sins, and not present ourselves with a false
“Brothers, we have a treasure: the Saviour Jesus Christ, the Cross of Jesus
Christ is the treasure in which we rejoice”, but let us not forget “to also
confess our sins” for it is only in this way “the dialogue is Christian,
Catholic, and concrete”. “Jesus Christ did not save us with an idea, or an
intellectual programme. He saved us with his flesh, with the concreteness of the
flesh. He lowered himself, became man, and was made flesh until the end”. You
can only understand a treasure like this if you are transformed into clay vases.