To all: The following article is full of hope and promise for all on the election of pope Francis. This article was written by Steve Dzida, chair of Voice of the Faithful, Orange County, CA. God Bless Dr. Nick
We have a new Pope! Pope Francis. We think the dominant blessing of the recently concluded conclave is hope.
Hope first for who Pope Francis is not. He is not Italian. He is not European. He is not a product of the Roman Curia. For our beloved Church, in such dire need of restructuring and reform, a Pope cut from different cloth is a sign of hope.
Hope next for who Pope Francis is. He is one who has walked with the poor and feels their burdens. He is one who lives in simplicity, letting go the trappings of luxury and the prerogatives of office. He is a humble man for whom “servant leadership” is a familiar, not a foreign, concept. For our beloved Church, in such dire need of a leader who leads by example as Jesus did, Pope Francis is a sign of hope.
That the new Pope chose the name Francis is a sign of hope. (Were you as shocked as we were to learn that no Pope had chosen that name previously?) Francis of Assisi heard God’s call to “Rebuild my Church!” Francis turned his back on a life of comfort and wealth in favor of a simple life of service to the poor. Francis lived out his life and ministry almost entirely as a lay person, never being ordained a priest and perhaps being ordained a deacon only at the end of his life.
Could it be that Pope Francis has heard God’s call to “Rebuild my Church,” a Church plagued by scandal and a clerical culture set on proclaiming and preserving only itself rather than the Gospel? Could it be that Pope Francis aspires to live a simple life of service to the poor and all God’s people, even as Pope, and to swear off the trappings and allure of wealth and power? Could it be that Pope Francis recognizes the multitude of gifts bestowed by the Spirit of God on the lay people of our faith community and will join with them to discern together and follow together the will of the Spirit for God’s Church?
We can (and do) hope!
May the Spirit of God inspire Pope Francis and all the People of God. May the light of the Cross of Christ guide Pope Francis and all the People of God as we join together to build up God’s Church!
We ARE the Church! We ARE the Body of Christ!
Voice of the Faithful Orange County