To evangelise is to live the Gospel – then share it

The Gospel

You need to live the Gospel before you can share it, not the other way around, says Pope Francis.

The first thing communicators communicates is themselves, perhaps without meaning to.

“A missionary is a disciple who is so united to his master and lord that his hands, his mind and his heart are channels of Christ’s love,” the pope told a group of Comboni Missionaries who met at the Vatican last week.

“Great missionaries” like Blessed Daniele Comboni and St Frances Cabrini “lived their mission feeling animated and driven by the heart of Christ, that is, by the love of Christ.

“That drive pushed them to go out and go beyond: not only beyond geographical limits and boundaries, but first and foremost beyond their own personal limits.” Francis told the missionaries that to be sent out on a mission brought with it various responsibilities.

“The push of the Holy Spirit is what makes us come out of ourselves, out of our closures, out of our self-referentiality.”

Francis told the missionaries that this push makes us “go toward others, toward the peripheries, where the thirst for the Gospel is greatest.”

Being a missionary also means bringing God’s mercy, compassion and tenderness to people, he explained. That can be done only by being merciful, compassionate and tender.

“Mercy, tenderness is a universal language, which knows no boundaries.

“But you carry this message not so much as individual missionaries, but as a community, and this implies you must care not only for your personal style but also the style of your communities.”

Honest communication and care for one another will be a necessary component in your lives together, Francis said.

He made a similar remark when talking to a group of Pauline Fathers visiting him at the Vatican.

He handed them the speech he had prepared and then proceeded to talk about the importance of honest, complete communication.

“You have the vocation to communicate cleanly, evangelically,” he said. “If we take today’s media, there is a lack of cleanliness, a lack of honesty, a lack of completeness.”

Francis said disinformation is the order of the day.

Pointing out that one thing is said, but many other things remain hidden, he said.

“We must ensure that in our communication of faith this does not happen, that communication comes precisely from vocation, from the Gospel — crisp, clear, witnessed with one’s life.”


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News category: World.

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