I enjoyed another spirit filled day watching the coverage of Pope Francis. His address at the joint meeting of congress was inspirational. It was moving just watching the reaction of House Speaker John Boehner as he was moved to tears – almost uncontrollably at the end when the pope was blessing the crowd. There were several points made by Pope Francis – some were applauded and others were met with silence. I loved the way he talked about 4 particular Americans and the way in which they impacted not only the United States, but the world – “Three sons and a daughter of this land, four individuals and four dreams: Lincoln, liberty; Martin Luther King, liberty in plurality and non-exclusion; Dorothy Day, social justice and the rights of persons; and Thomas Merton, the capacity for dialogue and openness to God.” Another quote that struck me was, “”if we want security, let us give security; if we want life, let us give life; if we want opportunities, let us provide opportunities.” I was also happy to see the camera pan to Moses on the wall of the Capitol as the pope mentioned him. I did not know that was there. And it was so fitting to see the words, “In God We Trust”, right behind the pope. After his address, Pope Francis went to St. Patrick’s Church and spoke to an audience which included some who are homeless. He reminded us that Jesus Christ himself was homeless when he came into our world. He also said that everyone can pray and have a relationship with God. He then prayed with everyone there before heading to the tented area to help serve lunch as part of Catholic Charities. Later in the day, he made his way to New York City and St. Patrick’s Cathedral. A friend of mine was in the audience and it was exciting to see his pictures. Many of those in attendance were bishops, priests, and religious men and women. What spoke to me most during his homily was his reminder that we should always follow what Christ would have us to do and that if we think we are failing, by human standards, it seemed that Jesus’ life ended in failure. He was a convicted criminal sentenced to the death penalty and left all his friends with little direction. Yet, that was not the end of the story. I love the way that Pope Francis is able to make us think about things in a different way.
I Found God today in more moving moments by Pope Francis.