In his homily last Sunday Pope Francis said: “Jesus doesn’t speak of an intellective knowledge, no, but of a personal relationship, of predilection, of mutual tenderness, a reflection of the same intimate relationship of love between him and the Father. This is the attitude through which a living relationship with Jesus is realised; to let oneself be known by him. Not to shut oneself in oneself but to open oneself to the Lord, so that he can know me.

“He is attentive to each one of us, He knows our heart in depth; He knows our good points and our bad points, the projects we have realised and the hopes that were disappointed. However, he accepts us as we are, also with our sins, to heal us, to forgive us. He guides us with love so that we can also go through rough paths without losing the way. He accompanies us.

“In turn, we are called to know Jesus. This implies an encounter with him, an encounter that arouses the desire to follow him, abandoning self-referential attitudes to set out on new roads, indicated by Christ himself and opened on vast horizons.”

‘Deep concern’ over gender ideology

The Catholic bishops of England and Wales  are “deeply concerned” that the “ideology of gender is creating confu­sion”. They said they seek to understand and accompany with compassion those who do not accept their biological sex.

Speaking at a press conference, Bishop John Sherrington, Auxiliary Bishop of Westminster, said they wanted to make a statement of principle about the difference between male and female “in contrast to those who argue individuals are free to define themselves”.

But he emphasised there is a “place of welcome for everyone in the Catholic Church” and expressed the need “to understand more fully those who want to change their gender; part of our learning has been listening to people”.

Saudi Arabian Church

During a visit to Saudi Arabia, Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, president of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, called for the construction of churches in the nation, which has two million Christians.

“All religions must be treated the same way, without discrimination, because their followers, as well as citizens who do not profess any religion, must be treated equally,” Cardinal Tauran said in comments on the controversial issue of “full citizenship” for all, which were reported by L’Osservatore Romano.

While several churches have been built in the emirates around Saudi Arabia, no churches are allowed in the kingdom. Celebrating Mass or worship is prohibited under penalty of arrest. Mass is generally celebrated in embassies.

(Compiled by Fr Joe Borg)


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