Wednesday, June 15, 2011

New evangelization must start with the heart, Pope teaches

The effort to renovate the evangelization of mankind begins in the human heart, Pope Benedict XVI told the clergy, religious and laity of the Diocese of Rome, June 13.

“To be effectual the proclamation of faith must begin with a heart that believes, hopes, loves, a heart that loves Christ and believes in the power of the Holy Spirit!” the Pope told those gathered at St. John Lateran Cathedral for the Rome diocese’s annual convention.

The Pope sharp to how St. Peter’s proclamation of Jesus’ resurrection at Pentecost was “not limited to a simple list of facts” but “cut to the heart” of those who heard him.

“The resurrection of Jesus was able and is able to light up human existence. In fact, this event has seen a new understanding of the self-respect of man and his eternal destiny.”

Mindful of his liability to lead the 2.5 million Catholics in the Diocese of Rome, Pope Benedict told those in St. John Lateran that there was a real danger to the health of the Church if it downplays the religion of Jesus Christ.

“If people forget God it is also because the person of Jesus is often abridged to that of a wise man and his divinity is weakened, if not denied. This way of thinking prevents people from greedy the radical novelty of Christianity, because if Jesus is not the only Son of the Father, then God never came to visit the history of man.”

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