Homily for the Mass for the first anniversary of the tragedy of Cromagnon


The Gospel speaks for itself. Family: Dad, Mom, a child brought to the temple to present it to God, and to submit it to life, as if the two were saying, “I will bring this child to present life.” Behind the gesture of having child to life, the illusions, the illusions of the father and the mother. The illusions of the heart of that mother with her child in her arms! The illusions of a mother when she has her child. The projects, looks ahead. It presents the life and dreams of the future of his son. He dreams of his own future transcended in the future of the child. So was Mary with these illusions and after seeing fulfilled this religious rite break the old man’s words: “A sword will pierce your heart.” At a sword will pierce your heart. This mother Illusions fade, change your mood and the way back is different than that which had been made to reach the temple. That mother was wondering what sword would pierce the heart and I sensed that the presentation of this child’s life was marked by tragedy. Such was Mary’s heart that day.

So Mary lived the way back to the temple and the temple. And then I was living along life when a few days later had to flee to Egypt because I persecuted because marginalized child … when they were exiled in that foreign country, when they had to return to the Galilee secretly to avoid persecution the child, when I saw that kid made man was persecuted, was slandered when she sensed her mother’s intuition betrayal and tragedy. Sensed that was paid for that child was betrayed, that was paid for that truth was hidden as it was when they were paid to the guardians of the tomb to say otherwise.

All this in the heart of the mother. That mother after suffering what he lived: the outcome of the tragedy. The heart of Mary at the foot of the cross at the time of the tragedy, at the time that marks the second part of the prophecy of the old temple. The first part “and you yourself a sword will pierce your heart” was living at the foot of the cross and it was then that he met the second part “so clearly manifest the inner thoughts of many.”

At the time of the tragedy out what is in the hearts of people and there stood by the cross about poquititos, faithful to Jesus, others hiding in fear, others watching their backs to keep positions, others trying to see how to fix Judas’ betrayal politically, others looking ahead without Jesus and surfaces so that each had at heart. That poor thief who was crucified with him out the best we had in his heart and says, “Lord, remember me.” Jesus brings out what is in the hearts of men and that a mother feels so special.

A year ago, our city was the slap of a tragedy. A year ago this path of hope for so many mothers with their children was mowed. These children are no more. This city makes next year trying to take over but, as on the cross, is ugly to be with the tragedy. It’s hard as a man or woman to take charge of a tragedy. With love. Only the hearts of you moms know, and can tell us about what a tragedy. Only the heart of you, parents, can help us in this path of fidelity to truth in tragedy.

And in this city was reaped life of 194 young children were promised, they were future, we reaped the hope that these guys will not be replaced by anyone because everyone is unique, irreplaceable. And so I would say to this city so upset about many things that look with a mother’s heart, because the city is also mother to these children who are no longer, and cry …

Dear brothers and sisters: Buenos Aires requires mourn. Buenos Aires has not cried enough. Buenos Aires working, looking, “thread”, do business, tourism is concerned, but has not cried enough this slap. Buenos Aires needs to be purified by the tears of this tragedy and many others.

Today, we are here taking us into the heart of a mother who went to the temple full of illusions and returned with the assurance that these illusions were to be mowed, cut. Entering this heart let us remember these children of the city, this city mother who recognizes them, you realize that they, like the case of Abraham in the first reading, are the children of the inheritance and the inheritance that we give these kids today no longer is a very stern warning: you are not your hearts!, he says.

Your photos here, their names, their lives symbolized in these candles we are screaming that we are not your hearts. That is the legacy that we give. They are the children of the inheritance that says, “cry”.

City distracted, dispersed city, town selfish cries. You need to be purified by tears. Today here praying together give this message to our brothers in Buenos Aires: cry together, we need to cry in Buenos Aires.

We pray at this Mass, entering the heart of our Virgin Mother took her son to the temple with a feeling and brought him back with another feeling. And cry. Mourn here. Cry out and ask the Lord to touch the hearts of each of our brothers in this city and do mourn. To purify the tears to this city as frivolous and superficial.

Meanwhile, remember the names of the children, those who are not but let’s heritage, the stark warning that we are not responsible for the multiple tragedies of the city. While we think of these guys, collect his inheritance, in the heart guardémosla cejemos not fight for them.

And pray for them, for the legacy they left us with his life and this city to not do both distracted

So be it.

Jorge Mario Bergoglio S.J.
Archbishop of Buenos Aires
Friday December 30, 2005

Posted in 2005

Archbishop’s homily at Midnight Mass

He was born at night, it was announced at night “shepherds keeping watch over their flock” (Luke 2: 8), encolumnó with “the people who walked in darkness …” with “the inhabitants of the country of darkness “(Isaiah 9: 1). It was light, “a great light” (Isaiah 9: 1) that turns on the dense darkness, light envelops everything, “and the glory of the Lord shone around” (Luke 2: 9). So we today’s liturgy presents the birth of the Savior as surrounding light, penetrates all darkness. It is the presence of the Lord among his people, destroying the presence of weight loss, the sadness of slavery and the joy plant. “Fear not, for I bring you good news of great joy for all the people: Today in the town of David a Savior has been born, who is Christ the Lord.” (Luke 2: 10-11). “I was born” yes to all people born, born for the whole story on the way, comes to each of us. There is a notice in “Social Notes”. This is an ad that touches the very core of the story and starts to walk otherwise, another way of understanding, another way of living: walking, understand, and exist alongside “God with us.”

It took many centuries since humanity began to darken. I think of that afternoon in the commission of the first crime and knife Cain took the life of his brother (Gen. 4: 8). It took many centuries of crime, war, slavery, hatred. And the God who had planted his dream in the flesh of man, made in His image and likeness, still waiting. Illusions of God! Reason had to disappear. But he could not: he was “enslaved”, as it were, of his faithfulness, he could not deny himself the faithful God (2 Tim. 2: 13). And that God was still waiting. His illusions, rooted in their fidelity, were guarded by patience. God’s patience towards corruption of towns and men! Only a small remnant “poor and humble, who took refuge in the name of the Lord” (Zephaniah 3: 12) accompanied by his patience in the midst of darkness, first shared his illusions.

And, in this historic walk tonight hatching of light amid the darkness tells us that God is Father and not never disappoints. The darkness of sin and corruption of centuries are not enough to discourage you. Here is the announcement tonight: God is Father’s heart and does not deny his dreams for their children. Our God is not disappointed, not permitting. It knows the rudeness and impatience, just wait, wait forever as the father in the parable (Luke 15:20) because every moment up to the terrace of the story to glimpse from afar the return of the children.

Tonight, in the stillness and silence of that small remnant of righteous, the children begin to return and do it in the Son who agreed to be brother to accompany them on the road. That Son, which the angel had told San Jose to “save his people from their sins” (Matthew 1: 21). Everything is cute, small, silent: “A child is born to us, a son given to us” (Isaiah 9: 5), “This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger “(Luke 2: 12). The realm of appearance, the self and fleeting, the kingdom of sin and corruption, wars and hatred of centuries and today they crash in silent tonight gentleness, the tenderness of a child who concentrates in itself all love, all the patience of God is not given himself the right to be disappointed. And, with the child, sheltering the dreams of God’s Mother, his mother and ours, among caresses and smiles, keeps telling us throughout history: “Do whatever he tells you” (John 2:5).

This is what I would like to share today in the peace of this holy night: God is our Father, not disappointed. Wait until the end. He gave us his Son as a brother to him to walk with us, to be light in the darkness and wait with us for the “blessed hope” final (Titus 2:13). Our God, the same who sowed their hopes in us, it is not granted disappointed of his work, is our hope. As the angels to the shepherds would say today: “Do not be afraid.” Do not fear anyone. Let the rains, earthquakes, winds, corruption, persecution to “rest” of the righteous … (Cf. Mt 7: 24-25). Do not be afraid that our house is always founded on the rock of this conviction: the Father awaits, is patient, loves us, send your child to walk with us while we are not afraid grounded on the conviction that our God not disappoint and we wait. This is the light that shines tonight. With these sentiments I wish you Merry Christmas.

Buenos Aires, December 25, 2005.

Card. Jorge Mario Bergoglio S.J.

Posted in 2005

31st Youth Pilgrimage to Lujan

Charter for Children

A priests, consecrated, consecrated and faithful of the Archdiocese

Dear brothers and sisters:

The XXXI youth pilgrimage to the Shrine of Luján has the theme “Mother, help us to care for life.” We ask our Mother this grace to help us care for all life and all life. We do it with the cry subsidiary of prayer and confidence that gives us the Virgin. She told Juan Diego: “Am I not here who am your mother”? Knowing that is close to her maternal tenderness gives us strength to keep asking, with hearts of children, “Mother help us care for life.” And, in light of this filial prayer, I want to propose a reflection of you a life problem that affects our city.

In recent years have joined the new realities cityscape: roadblocks, pickets, people living in the villages … A reality, I think the most painful, that has been imposed on the landscape, is starring children. The presence of unfair and risky situations that are victims of our children and teenagers were beaten and stir.

Children and young people on the streets, begging, sleeping in subways and railway stations, in doorways and arcades, sometimes “aspiring” alone or in groups, are common in the everyday realities cityscape.

Children and adolescents cartoneando and scavenging in search perhaps their only daily meal, even in hours of the night tickets.

Children and young people, often under the eye of more than regentean, engaged in various formal and informal jobs, selling, juggling, cleaning windows, opening car doors or handing out prayer cards in the subways.

In the City of Buenos Aires is prohibited “blood drive.” If a cart pulled by a horse pickers can be seized … But there are hundreds of cardboard carts that are everywhere (I see daily in the downtown) and as a horse can not, then often push them boys. Do these guys are not “blood drive”?

On 13 August, the day we learned that a pedophile ring operated in the Chacarita, Floresta, Congress, Recoleta, San Telmo, Montserrat, Nunez, Palermo and Caballito. Boys and girls between 5 and 15 years, maintaining relationships with adults. A few years ago we knew rasgábamos garments when the Sex-Tours organized in Europe to parts of Asia including sex with children … and now we have installed here, even in the menus of some luxurious accommodation.

It is a painful reality the increasing use of children and adolescents in drug trafficking. It also aberrant excessive consumption of alcohol by children and young people, with the connivance of unscrupulous traders. Even sometimes seen as practice alcohol intake in young children.

Moreover, the actual data show us that most of our children are poor and that about 50% of the poor are children. Poverty levels are expressed dramatically today and in our future, with certain consequences from nutritional deficiencies, environmental, poor health, violence and promiscuity naturalized, which affect their growth, problematize their personal relationship and become difficult their social and Community. It is frightening that some tourism companies, as part of tours organized in our city, incorporated in the slums, where children live in extreme poverty or poverty, as observation sites and check for foreign visitors.

Cultural production, especially the television offer, available to our children and youth, as I have pointed prestigious institutions and personalities of our society, where degradation programs and frivolity of sexuality, the devaluation of the family, promotion disvalues ​​makeup of artificially as values ​​and the exaltation of violence, along with an irresponsible freedom “ganic” are constant, providing components of behavior that become paradigmatic for our youth, address the lack of control agencies and funding accomplice companies and institutions.

This reality speaks of a moral degradation increasingly widespread and deep that makes one wonder how to recover the respect for life and for the dignity of our children. So many of them we are robbed of their childhood and we are mortgaged their future and ours: a responsibility, as a society, we share and that weighs more on high power, education and wealth.

And if we look at the religious reality, how many children do not know how to pray!, How many have been taught not to look and see the face of the Heavenly Father, who loves them and prefer! Severe deficiency in the very being of a person.

All these realities confronting us and shake our responsibility as Christians, our duty as citizens, our solidarity as participants in a community that we increasingly humane, more dignified and more in keeping with human dignity and society.

Faced with this reality of our children and adolescents are different reactions that are geared to a gradual habituation growing passivity and indifference, a kind of normality of injustice, or, on the other hand, a false attitude and course rules claiming common good increasing repression and control that goes from the lower age of criminal responsibility to its forced family separation, sometimes unfairly subjecting the judiciary situations of family poverty or promoting abusive discretionary and institutionalization.

We could continue with this description, which involves a cry to be aware. We must be aware of the emergency situation of our children and youth. We must face our own personal and social responsibilities to the emergency. We must assume ownership of the constitutional mandates in the field.

We must realize that every guy marginalized, abandoned or homeless, with poor access to benefits of education and health, the full expression is not only an injustice but an institutional failure that includes both the family as also their neighbors, neighborhood institutions, his parish and the various levels of the state in its various expressions. Many of these situations demand an immediate response, but not with the immediacy of sparklers. The search and implementation of responses emparchadoras can not make us forget that we need a change of heart and mind that leads us to recognize and honor the lives of these kids from the womb of his mother until they rest in God the Father, and daily act accordingly.

We must get into the heart of God and begin to hear the voice of the weak, these children and adolescents, and to remember the words of the Lord “Whoever receives one such child in my name, receiveth me it” (Mt . 18: 5), and, “Beware of despising one of these little ones, for I tell you that their angels in heaven are continually in the presence of my Father in heaven” (Mt 18: 10). Both these voices as the word of God should move us in our commitment and our action:

Never abandoned children in our city;
adolescence and never marginalized youth in our city;
no Christian, no church, no authority indolent or indifferent to the ordeal of our families and our children;
any selfishness or self-interest or sectoral effort and waning commitment dilate the unity and coordination necessary for urgent and immediate effort.
I am concerned and saddened by this situation. So I wanted to write this letter. I have discussed the matter with some scholars, with the Episcopal Vicariate of Children, with the Commission for Children and Adolescents at risk, with some judges and legislators. Based on what they thought to do a brief summary to add in ANNEX. This will help us greatly to reflect on this reality and I know that will be useful in the way of the Archdiocesan Assembly. But above all, I want our eyes to adjust to this new landscape citizen who is starring children. I ask, please, that we open our hearts to this painful reality … the Herods of today have many different faces, but the reality is the same: it kills children, kills her smile, it kills hope … are cannon fodder. Let us look with fresh eyes at the children of our city and dare to mourn. Look to the Lady and let us say from our heart’s cry: “Mother, help us to care for life.”

With fatherly and brotherly love

Card. Jorge Mario Bergoglio S.J.

Buenos Aires, October 1, 2005, the Feast of St. Therese of the Child Jesus, Patroness of the Children of the Archdiocese.
The troubled existence of a state system of care and protection of children and adolescents that can qualify as a “system in crisis” highlights a reality where systematic deficiencies, the breaks or institutional conflicts are common, paying a social imaginary about it and baring our behavior as a society.

This situation arises in a scenario where, despite the recovery of economic growth in our everyday reality remains inequitable distribution of wealth, which so fiercely hit Argentine families in the recent past, continuing his tendency to focus on higher levels of power and wealth without effort raised from government measures to achieve that effect change as a society we humiliates and mortifies us.

State policies should aim to economic growth and a fair distribution of income so that developing countries appear to the quality of life of its inhabitants.

“The true and full protection of children means that they can fully enjoy all their rights, including their economic, social and cultural rights, embodied in various international instruments. The States parties to the international human rights treaties have an obligation to take positive measures to ensure the protection of all the rights of the child “(Inter-American Court of Human Rights by the Advisory Opinion OC-17/2002” Status of Human Rights Child “, August 28, 2002, section 8 of the operative part).

Therefore, state action can not be reduced to achieve reform legislation on children, adapted to the Convention on the Rights of the Child, but should emphasize the effectuation of the Convention through the monitoring of management public policies designed to restore the violated rights (unmet needs). It is not only to make laws but to fulfill them properly through effective management within a framework of redistribution of wealth and job creation.

Recall finally the main conclusion of the Working Committee No. 8 “Children and Youth at Risk” of the Social Pastoral Conference VIII (25 June 2005): “The children and family policy must be state policies being due create, monitor and transform social programs to that end, which in turn should consider strengthening and development of family life, articulating and co-managing public resources with civil society, and strengthening the capacity of family members to face adversity and emerge stronger. ”

Efforts should be made to reassess the culture of the work involved the notes typical effort, sacrifice, conduct and discipline.

The work is an obligation but also a right exemplary for children: children to see their parents laboring displayed its possible development, growth and maturation.

While in times of economic crisis, where unemployment grows, states tend to spend subsidizing employment or plans to help the livelihoods of men, these policies should be temporary tools and should not become state policy.

If states do not have a strong policy of industrial growth, employment will not grow, one way to ensure that the inhabitants of a nation commutative justice.

Hence, measuring the level of education, health, justice, culture, sport, strengthening families, growth and development of children, care of the elderly.

It is necessary to protect the work of man. How is it protected? Educating man culturalizándolo, training him, giving legal protection worthy, giving rest, place for recreation, ensuring decent conditions for their old age, providing a health system that adequately protects their labor woes.

Workers are not “instruments bipeds, without freedom, without morals, which have only recently winning hands and soul intent” as hold up the Abbe Sieyes, who was one of the instigators of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen .

With the promotion and strengthening of the work of adults achieve avoid work guys. It is very difficult for a guy out to look for work if their parents have a decent job that gives you the satisfaction of the needs of the family.

Moreover, the children and adolescents tend to attend and stay in schools, doing their duty and right which is essentially the study.

We need to develop programs to promote access and retention in school, where teachers must be committed, families and children themselves.

The school is the main mechanism of inclusion. Those who leave school and lose all hope that school is the place where kids can develop a life plan and start forming their identity. Currently, truancy often leads to no income to work but leads the young to the field of social exclusion: the dropout seems to mean the recruitment, especially teenagers, to a world in which increases their vulnerability in relation to urban violence, abuse and addiction to drugs or alcohol. While the school can not manage to avoid these problems, it seems to be the last frontier in the State, families and adults are in charge of youth, in which they work, sometimes with difficulty, values ​​and norms related humanity and citizenship and in which the future is not yet dead.

The essential function of the school is to train citizens free and able to defend their rights and fulfill their obligations. However, to keep the child or adolescent in school must be emptied of its contents. The constitutional right that is guaranteed is the right to education, not the right to schooling. Not just opening schools, delivering useful books or how that will be accomplished to fulfill this right. This will require a joint effort of the entire school community. This effort on the one hand axis shall be the motivation of the young, not only to stay in school but to train and learn, and secondly should seek to strengthen and enhance the role of the teacher so that he can face the new realities are presented in the classroom.

To understand the causes of school failure and dropout keep in mind is an important variable that child malnutrition. Childhood is the period characterized by body growth, which requires a certain amount of nutrients to synthesize new tissues or completion milestones as neurodevelopment.

The deficient diet from conception in the womb of the mother to the three years in which the nervous system develops, produces physical or psychological injuries that affect them for life. It is essential to keep track of the children from the time the pregnant mom starts monitoring at hospitals to reduce the risk of babies born with low birth weight and lower infant mortality rates.

The problem of child malnutrition in our city is not resolved delivering food boxes, that reduces the phenomenon of malnutrition at a biological level and ignores social, economic, and cultural anthropology. We must educate and create good eating habits to prevent developmental problems in our children.

Moreover, the improvement of the situation of children in regard to poverty, can not be away from general public policies aimed at the whole society. Precisely distributionist policies embodied in the 50s in Latin America, helped reduce the “institutionalization” of children, when there was no legislation to conceptualize children as subjects of law.

It disvalioso for society as a whole, and primarily for teachers and students, the school turns out to be in fact primarily a place to feed assists, desnaturalizandose the essential concept of teaching.

Schools should be containment of students learning status, training and in no way are intended to replace the families in one of the primary functions of which is to feed their children.

The most significant problems relating to the child and adolescent population, as we have discussed, are malnutrition, school dropouts and early entry into the world of work. These problems are deepened when we talk about teen pregnancy.

You need to work with accompanying adolescence in this process, strengthening their self-esteem, sense of responsibility, health care and enabling the design of alternative projects for their lives.

We believe the importance of strengthening family ties to prevent children from reaching the end homeless or institutionalized.

While there is a strong social demand for institutionalization, treatments with long imprisonment have not achieved good results. This is shown as eight out of ten adult prisoners passed through youth custody. It is also worrying that while four out of ten guys entrants criminal cases admitted for reasons other assistance, because his family can not care for them or because they are victims of violence.

These events are closely linked to the lack of updating legislation on the subject, where the persistence of the law, known as Act Agote, progressive in his time and does not reflect changes in our society and looks based on the child and the young as a legal entity. This new look is fully expressed by the Convention on the Rights of the Child, adopted by our country reserves by law 23,849, is part of the constitutional plexus from de1994 constitutional reform.

The Convention on Human Rights treaty ratification has increased among member states of the United Nations system, including the Vatican State is not only a commitment of the signatories from the international point of view, but fundamentally redefines the obligations insurmountable public policy regarding childhood, adolescence, youth and families.

The preamble notes, as supporters of the need items and force of the Convention, among other statements: “… Convinced that the family, as the fundamental group of society and the natural environment for the growth and well-being of all its members, and in particularly children, should receive the necessary protection and assistance to fully assume its responsibilities within the community, “adding” recognizing that the child for the full and harmonious development of his personality, should grow up in a family in an environment of love, happiness and understanding. ”

Improving socio-economic conditions of childhood is not unrelated to what happens to each family, which represents the cultural and psychosocial support growth of any child. They have warned recently only children programs, as if it could improve the situation of children without families. By the way remember that: “The family is the primary context for children’s development and exercise of their rights. Therefore, the State must support and strengthen the family, through various measures it requires to best fulfill its natural role in this field “(Inter-American Court of Human Rights by OC-17/2002 Advisory Opinion” Status and Human Rights of the Child “, August 28, 2002, section 4. of the decision).

Assume the Convention involves establishing a relationship between the state and citizens, children and youth with defining a worldview between the state and community members. It should not create a new rhetoric, nor be placed only within an ethical framework. Assume the Convention involves overcoming a traditional perspective identified needs to propose a rights approach where universality, comprehensiveness and enforceability are the tripod that defines the state’s relationship with children and adolescents.

For this purpose the State shall direct all available resources, through plans, programs and actions from the perspective generated by this new law.

Faced with this reality, Christians and people of good will can not remain inactive or disorganized in individual or group actions, although valuable specimens lack the effectiveness and impact necessary to transform reality.

We must not forget the many examples of selflessness, solidarity, responsibility and witness that every day we provide families and youth institutions in the daily effort to survive, resist and in the task of building a more just society.

The path is arduous but the mandate delegated. Time to take our own responsibilities towards children and young people, as Christians, as citizens, as men and women of good will. It is time that the institutions concerned with children and young people are heard and taken into account. It is time that the State, as Guarantor of the Commons to take responsibility and obligation, in the defense of life, the protection of its growth and development in human and social development of individuals, families and institutions.

Quickly implement State policies aimed at developing low-income families.

The City budget should consider awarding priority special items intended to promote employment and economic growth in a way that people get their work and that value is worth to them.

The leaders, both leading the destinies of the city government as the opposition, shall develop a plan to abolish all child labor practices and all forms of exploitation of children.

At the same time these leaders should agree and implement policies quickly applied to public education so that teachers receive a salary according to their needs, they can devote to comprehensive training, education and motivation of children to effect these discover the essential values ​​of life. Thus teaching will find the essential principles of its existence.

Those same leaders should quickly agree and implement a plan aimed at protecting sanitary systematized to low-income families, so that children from conception in the womb are treated medically and continued its evolution and growth.

A society that boasts of such can not ignore the values ​​that lead to the full realization of man in all its development. And among those values ​​included the religious dimension. Man is the image of God and called to communion with Him

The policies implemented to date have produced severe damage to the two extremes of life, precisely to the most vulnerable in this society: children and the elderly.

No posterguemos for future compliance with these debts, the day and time is now or never.

Posted in 2005

Archbishop’s homily on the feast of San Cayetano

Archbishop’s homily on the feast of San Cayetano

The scene of Jesus, Master, washing the feet of his disciples, is one of those scenes from the Gospel that one never tires of looking at and remember. The washing of feet is etched in the memory of the Church and every Holy Thursday repeated the gesture of Jesus and our turn again the heart: Our Lord Jesus Christ washed the feet and showed us that if we imitate what we’ll be happy: “If taste this truth-that power is service-and practice, be happy “.

San Juan puts a stunning setting to this gesture of the Lord. It tells us that Jesus was aware that it was “his last gesture” because “his hour had come to pass from this world to the Father”. The Lord wanted to express his final gesture to wash it off the feet of his friends. The dusty and tired feet road.

Second John tells us that it was a gesture of love “to the end”. We say that the Cross was the end of love. And it is true, was the bloody end: love to death. But life has another end that is not painful but cute: the end of love tenderly to detail. The Lord wanted to share the Eucharist fully purified, as if they were already in heaven, cleaning up those little spots that seem inevitable, the last time … And personally wanted to do this service. Did you see that there are times in large parties, a detail threatens to spoil the party? Well, that way this service will wash the feet of Jesus and tell us to wash each other: on the side of forgiveness also the details, it is sometimes more difficult.

And the third thing John tells us is that the Lord was aware that at the time “had all the power in the world in his hands”, that “the Father had given all things into his hands.” And what did he do with all that power? We concentrated on a single gesture, a gesture of service: the service of forgiveness in every detail. And since power became forever in service. If the most powerful use all his power to serve and forgive, which uses it for anything else ends up looking foolish. With that simple gesture Jesus “brought down the mighty from their thrones and lifted up the lowly” as well said the Virgin his Mother and our Mother. Of course I did not learn the powerful but much later, but the gesture of the King were emptied of all meaning gestures are made to gain power, to pretend to, to subjugate other power or enriched.

The anti-image, the mirror image, reinforcing the Lord’s testimony is that of Pilate washing his hands. If I had known before him to the Almighty and the Almighty had used his power to wash the feet of his disciples, never had washed her hands! With that gesture came forever in the history of ridiculous. And whenever we have some power washing our hands and we blame others – children, parents, the neighbor, to the above, to the world situation, to reality, to the structures or the whatsoever-even the smallest suffering of our brothers, we side of Pilate let thicken pathetic row of those who used the power for their own gain and fame.

Power is service and service to be good, must reach the smallest detail that makes the other “sits well attended” dignified. So what of washing feet. The Lord wants us to feel included in his, in his life of communion with the Father, and that there is nothing to tarnish the greatness of that friendship. He wants us all together. With this gesture, while us equal and we sister. And sister making us part of that power: the peer service, the service until you notice that the serving is equal and that is attended.

That which is usual in the family, in which the birthday invites and makes the roast, or mom serves food until the day of the mother, we need to get to work life, a life of neighborhood, social and political life … And for this there is no other way than the testimony. The speeches are not enough, you need evidence. He who has a little more power must be set to serve a little more. Here the internal would be fierce, and sometimes gives that cute domestic family in which the mother and daughters are fighting them apron to wash the dishes.

Maybe someone will think that we are naive to say these things. But our people know very well what is the power and what is the service. Our people know very well that come to San Cayetano, at the foot of the Mighty San Cayetano, is a religious gesture-that’s why it is a political gesture, in the highest sense of the word. Touching the saint’s feet, to wash them with her tears, to whisper your order and beg the forgiveness of Jesus that cleanses and dignity, our people are telling us all that the power that Jesus gave to the saint’s service, that all power is service and not have to use it for something else. He says quietly, with gentle and patient gesture this endless line of tired feet and dirty perhaps, in the eyes of Jesus, are the world’s most beautiful feet:

because beautiful are the feet of a people who never tires of wanting peace pilgrimage, because beautiful are the feet of a people who again and again lets his Lord wash them and so regains his dignity;

beautiful because the whole wash all together, because not only is clean all the man but all men, as Paul VI said;

beautiful clean because once set off to wash the feet of his brothers, with the hope that this gesture gives a humble and almighty power that includes all those values ​​that make community: justice, work, bread and details match and we dignify us and make us feel good;

beautiful today, August 7, because the tail pilgrimage with Jesus and San Cayetano to restore dignity and community values.

With San Cayetano asked the Virgin, the Mother who taught that Jesus washing feet, we would teach us, we record it well in memory, so that every time that life presents us with a choice between including or excluding take advantage serve, among other wash the feet or wash our hands before the situation of the other, we come to the eyes this image of Jesus and the joy of service takes control of our hearts and encourage us to work for the United.

Buenos Aires, August 7, 2005.

Card. Jorge Mario Bergoglio S.J.

Posted in 2005

Archbishop’s homily on the Solemnity of Corpus Christi

Archbishop’s homily on the Solemnity of Corpus Christi

Dear brothers and sisters:

1 – In the readings of this feast, there are two phrases that I share with you. One is in San Pablo, and talks about union, union among many people, marriage is a large assembly church. It reads:

“There are one bread, and all of us, though many, are one body, because they partake of the one bread” (1 Cor 10, 17).

The other phrase opens and closes the Gospel today. Is Jesus, and tells of a walking bread that comes down from heaven, which gives life to a people walking and offered to give everyone life. It is a bread that reaches out to all, a missionary bread. It reads:

“This is the bread that came down from heaven: not as your ancestors who ate and died. He who eats this bread will live forever, and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world. ”

And, hearing these texts, I think of our Archdiocesan Assembly. Today we are people walking in Assembly, each in their state of life, with his personal charisma. Parents, priests, religious, catechists … walking in Assembly. Children, the elderly, young people, moms and dads walking … Assembly. God’s faithful people in Assembly walking in procession around the Body of Christ, the Bread of Life. As the people of Israel out of Egypt, walking toward the Promised Land Assembly, which for us is Heaven’s coming down, walking to meet us at every Eucharist, He who is Bread for the life of the world.

2 – The call to the Diocesan Assembly questioned us all. “What does it mean, how to prepare, why now …”. and raised questions, proposals, diagnoses, plans and review … Seeing all reactions in prayer came to my mind a way to come from John Paul II. When I had a problem or a challenge arose wondering two things: first what Gospel passage illuminates this challenge?, The other: who can convene and prepare to face or solve?.

The answer to the last question is clear: The Lord calls us all. Who can convene and prepare to meet the challenges of the Archdiocese? In all, the Church Assembly.

And as the Gospel passage that can illuminate this challenge I came into his heart to end the Gospel of John, that night when Peter said:

“‘I’m going fishing’ and the other replied ‘We’ll come with you.’ They went out and got into the boat, but that night they caught nothing. ”

But something caught in the middle of his fatigue and infertility. That small group, that first Church-yet-little boat that went to “navigate offshore Assembly” attracted him to the Lord. Jesus caught, you might say. In fact it was he who had come to seek. Or rather, had come to expect come looking, as usual. And Peter, when he sees it, is thrown overboard boldly, with courage.

3 – Walk in assembly, as the people of Israel in the wilderness, surfing assembly, like the first disciples of the Risen is a present ourselves to the Lord we look, we find and we manifest.

Walk in Assembly as did Joseph and Mary, is to experience the exciting together with others to discern, to let God who writes the history.

Walk as did the walkers Assembly of Emmaus is to enter the “Time of God” so that your partner presence allows us to deepen our identity and awareness of our mission.

Walk occasion Assembly is to get in the way of dialogue, as did the disciples as they followed Jesus, leaving then to share the bread, he will help overcome misunderstandings and grow in holiness and missionary community.

Walk in Assembly is going out to meet people, caring fragilities, trusting in the promise of Jesus to give efficacy to the Word and the gestures with which we witness to his love.

4 – When a particular church meets and persevere in prayer, together with Mary, the spirit feels called again and comes to our aid. We start walking, then, to draw the eye of our God.

We want to attract provident gaze upon us from our Heavenly Father, that we, prodigal sons, we see from afar, we have risen and just put on way back to Him who has prepared the banquet of the Eucharist, the Feast of Bread of Mercy, can rejoice beyond all human expectation.

We want to attract the gaze upon us companion of Jesus, the beloved Son, which also launches offshore and meets us on our weaknesses and difficulties of life when he sees that, for his sake, we have been exposed, and we need give us a hand in faith because we have thrown overboard and alone can not. For friends favorite to take to the seas, together with apostolic courage, the Lord has prepared breakfast on the shore of the Eucharist, the Feast waybread fraternally is shared in adoring silence, between mission and mission capable restoring forces beyond all expectation.

We want to bring upon us the eyes of the Spirit that burns the hearts, drawn to a church meeting that awaits.

It is the Spirit that makes us true Assembly and puts us on track to go out and proclaim the Gospel to all peoples.

The Spirit is the one who sets the pace of the life of the Church. And what brand eucharistically: marks the time when the Assembly meets to wait, and held together with the consolidation of the Pan Pacific and mercy that keeps the unit.

He is the one that marks the time when the Assembly sets off his breath driven living, and those who dare to go out on mission the Spirit accompanies them and they will serve their time the Bread of free charity, which feeds life unusually Assembly, multiplying loaves and reviving those who follow the Lord.

5. – When, with apostolic courage, walked into Assembly, the Lord walks with us. And then it is he who writes history. Assembly is please let God who writes the story, it is God who star in the fight, it is God who makes all things new. And do all this with us: with the signs we do with our hands, with the traces left by our steps … He writes the story. And he knows even write straight with crooked lines.

To Mary, Eucharistic Woman, the first that came to walk with Jesus in her womb, around which the first Assembly met to await Pentecost, we ask you to come with us to walk and keep us united in prayer that, through us, the Lord can come to give life to all the world, as is their wish.

Buenos Aires, May 28, 2005.

Card. Jorge Mario Bergoglio S.J

Posted in 2005

Mass for Education

Mass for Education

Dear Educators:

Again, the party central of all Christians is a time to get down to reflect on the work that brings us together. We try to take the pulse of the times we live in, and understand how we can recreate our spiritual experience, to respond accurately to the questions, anxieties and hopes of our time.

This effort is really essential. First, to start with the obvious, because we are in a situation where we see more and more clearly the consequences of the mistakes and reality demands that we demand of our people. We feel that Providence has given us a new opportunity to establish ourselves in a truly just and caring community where all people are respected in their dignity and their freedom promoted, in order to fulfill his destiny as sons and daughters of God.

That opportunity is also a challenge. We hold a huge responsibility, arising precisely from the requirement not to squander the chance given to us. It is obvious to note that you, dear teachers, they play a very important part of this task. A task full of difficulties, which require development surely generate dialogue practices and even, why not move arduous discussions aimed to contribute to the common good from an open and truly democratic, overcoming the tendency-as-to our mutual exclusions and debunking (or condemnation) of thinking or acting differently.

I still dare to insist: the Argentines took a long history of mutual intolerance. Until school education we received was articulated around bloodshed among compatriots, in any version-by turn “official” – of XIX century history. With that background, the school story to the National Organization considered as overcoming those antinomies, we as a people in the twentieth century, but to continue excluding us, forbidding, asesinándonos, bombarding, fusilándonos, repressing and mutually desapareciéndonos. Those who know we can remember that the use of these verbs I just choose not just metaphorical.

Are we now able to learn? Can we grow as a community, to finally stop having unwanted currently painful the Martín Fierro prophecy about the brothers who are devoured by outsiders or, worse, devouring each other?

Other views have shown us, thank God, who among us fructify also all kinds of wills and initiatives that promote life and solidarity, calling for justice, trying to seek the truth. It will be in these personal and social energies that we have to dig to respond to God’s call to build, once and for all and with his grace, a country of brothers.

In addition, the effort to read the signs of the times to understand what God wants of us in every historical situation is also required by the very structure of the Christian faith. I dare say that without this ongoing exercise, our Christian vocation of Christian teachers, pastors, witnesses of the Resurrection in the multiple dimensions of human life-resents to lose its true value transformer. Unable to heed the word of salvation outside the place where we encounter it, ie in concrete human history in which the Lord became incarnate and which founded his Church to preach the Gospel “to the end of the world “(Mt 28:20),

A mature community prioritizes LIFE

From our ecclesial communities, we are aware that we are moving Argentines times change and today more than ever is needed prayer and reflection, in order to serious spiritual discernment and pastoral.

In particular, I would draw the attention of all those who are now charged with the task of accompanying the children and youth in their maturation process. I think it is essential to try to approach the reality that children living in our society, and ask ourselves what role we fulfill it.

If we start from reality, we can not put in the middle of the scene two painful events that have shaken the society as a whole, but especially the young and those who are close to them. I mean the tragedy of El Carmen and the terrible December 30 in the neighborhood of Once. Two facts very different from each other, but have a common message for our community, what is happening to our boys? What is it, rather, with us, we can not take care of the situation of abandonment and loneliness that our kids are? How is it that we have reached the point of realizing the problems of teenagers when one of them suffers a crisis that led him to kill his comrades with a gun stolen his father? How do we repair the neglect of those who are tasked with taking care of our kids only when nearly two hundred people, mostly children and young people are sacrificed in the name of the business, carelessness and irresponsibility? It’s up to us, obviously, determine responsibilities, although we know that it is imperative that those responsibilities are revealed and everyone has to take care of his own. Not good dilute human actions and omissions have had such terrible consequences in a kind of collective guilt. As we prayed at Mass a month after the tragedy, “we ask (God) justice. We ask that your humble people do not be fooled by any human cunning, that his mighty hand put things in place and justice. The wound is incurable. Nobody has the right to experiment with children and youth. They are the hope of a people and we must take care with responsible decision. ”

Even so, and while we hope that beyond political opportunism prime responsibility and seriousness in what should long have sought (the common good in its most basic expression, the very life of citizens), we need to open eyes and revisit our own ideas, feelings, actions and omissions in the care field, promotion and education of children and adolescents. For other risks that can be run is to limit the problem to a question of control in leisure centers, the same way a few months ago, the discussion of violent situations that are reflected in the school could have slipped to a mere indication of psychodiagnostic and “dial melee” for guys from a medical-type look, psicopatologizante. And I’m not minimizing the importance of ensuring the security of the premises, or the indispensable contributions of health professionals. Simply, I am inviting us to be well aware that things are never isolated from each other, and all of us (parents, teachers, pastors …) we have in our hands the responsibility and the opportunity to make this world a much more space for our kids.

At this point, I would like to reiterate some ideas I shared with many of you at the Forum for Teachers, last October.

We are all aware of the increasing difficulties that arise when we accompany our kids from our schools. As I said in the forum, market pressure, with your consumer proposal and ruthless competition, the lack of economic resources, social, psychological and moral gravity increasing risks to be avoided … All this means that families are made uphill fulfill its function, and that the school is becoming increasingly go alone in the task of containing, sustaining and promoting human development of their students.

This loneliness viviéndose ends, inevitably, as overuse. I know you, dear teachers, are having to carry on their backs not only that for which they were prepared, but with a multitude of explicit or tacit demands that deplete. Added to this are the media, which is not over whether they help or confuse matters further, most delicate issues dealing with the same ease with which aired the intimacies of the characters of the show, in the same block of the newscast, in the same page of the newspaper, interspersed with advertisements most unlikely objects. And all this while we’re looking more and more to control a society in which everyone is suspicious of everyone, and at the same time, a fairly new attention given to many forms of abuse and neglect, are attached both the bad habit of airing complaints without checking sources such as sufficiently unscrupulous characters who only see the institutions an opportunity to profit at any cost.

So what? What you have to do and are overburdened and tired of? Is he right that says “my job is to teach a particular discipline, I’m not going to put the body to hit me, the others take care of himself”? And, yes, I wish everyone did his due. But, as I said a few months ago, the teacher may not be limited to the “second mother” that was in the past, if there was formerly a “first”. I’m sure we all remember how the guys like we could play on the sidewalk, adequately fed and loved, in families where the welfare, care and affection were the everyday. I also know that more than once tried to discuss when things stopped being so, who started it all, who degraded education, who dismantled the relationship between education and work, who weakened the family, who undermined the authority, who sprayed the State , who led the institutional anomie, who corrupted the ideals, utopias who deflated … We can analyze all this ad nauseum, discuss, review … But what is indisputable is that you face daily to boys and girls of flesh and blood, with possibilities, desires, fears and real shortcomings. Guys who are there, body and soul, as they are and as they come, with an adult, calling, waiting, criticizing, begging his way, infinitely lonely, needy, frightened, confident persistently but sometimes you do with face indifference, contempt or anger, watching to see if someone offers them something else … or closes another door in his face.

Immense responsibility that requires us not only an ethical decision, not just a conscious commitment and hard, but also, and more basically, an appropriate degree of personal maturity.

Maturity that sometimes seems to be a rare commodity in our society Argentina, always wanting to start from scratch, like those before us had not existed, always finding the back to highlight what divides us but what unites us is in sight, always oppose in case, throwing the rock and hiding her hand, softly whistling and looking the other way when push comes to shove, spouting patriotism and passion for justice while passing the envelope under the table or get a friend to help us “sneak” in line …
Looks like a meditation on the maturity we will all come good. Not only because we will mature meditating, but that we see ourselves with more open eyes (perhaps as we see our teens?) And therefore even begin to change behaviors and attitudes that are closest to us.

It is not easy to define what constitutes maturity. Especially since more than a concept, “maturity” seems to be a metaphor. Taken from the fruit?? I do not know. If so, we should point out immediately that there is a fundamental difference between apples and peaches and humans. While the full development (because that’s the point) of the fruit is a process that depends directly on certain plant genetic programming and appropriate environmental conditions (climate, the action of insects, birds and wind for pollination flowers, moisture, soil nutrients …), in the case of the “maturity” is not just about human genetics and nutrition. Unless you consider man as a living being no different from the other (amoebas, cactus …).

Sometimes when you read some disclosures “scientific” is left with the impression that genes determine almost at the same level that you have straight or curly hair, the first tooth to fall out after five years, he do poorly in school, to be poor, to be sociable, that one day kill his mother and eventually die of a heart attack at forties.

But if the maturity were only precontained developing something in the genetic code, it really would not be much to do. The dictionary of the Real Academia gives a second meaning of “maturity”, “good judgment or prudence, wisdom.” And here we are in a world very different from biology. For prudence, good judgment and wisdom depend not merely quantitative growth factors, but a whole chain of elements are synthesized inside the person. More precisely, in the center of their freedom.

Then, maturity, from this point of view (which is presented as much more interesting and rich for our reflection), could be understood as the ability to use our freedom in a “sensible”, “prudent”. Note that with this, we run not only the biological reduction, but in the same psychological perspective, to access an ethical consideration. Attention: this is not a choice between two approaches. Without a specific genetic program can not be human, and without the development of the powers that are the subject of psychology can not speak of a maturity in the ethical sense. But precisely because the human dimension implies that multiplicity want to emphasize the difference: I do not compete, as a pastor, “teach” in psychology, but to propose a number of considerations that make the orientation of our work freely.

If we speak of wisdom and prudence, the word, dialogue, including teaching, have a lot to do with maturity. Because to get to work that way, “sane”, one must have accumulated many experiences, many choices made, rehearsed many responses to the challenges of life. Obviously there is no “sense” out of time. At first, then, still very close to the psychological and even biological maturity takes time.

But let us return to the mature person as someone who makes use of his freedom in a certain way. What, we wonder then, that? Because here opens another problem: is there a “court of maturity”? Who determines when something is “wise and prudent”? ? “The Others” (whoever they are)? Or everyone from his experience and guidance? If in the first instance we have to relate maturity with time, then we place ourselves in the conflict between the individual and others. Time freedom, freedom in society.
This is, then, the way I propose. A journey that, as we shall see, will allow us to understand human maturity in an open perspective. Because in the end we find a final dimension of maturity: the divine invitation to transcend the horizon of the intersubjective and social open to the religious, ie ethical maturity to holiness.

But do not get ahead of ourselves: the reflection is still “green”.
For something ceases to be “green” and get to be “mature” seriously, it is essential not to rush. How many times have we disappointed with very good fruit appearance and little flavor! And we say: “Refrigerator is” … That is, he was not given the time required to reach the point of perfection.

Bridging the gap, human growth, in its ethical dimension, also takes time. Psychologists agree diverse schools, beyond their differences, in which the moral conscience is developed through a process involving several steps and movements, passing necessarily in time.

Thus: to reach a point of maturity, that is, to be able to truly free and responsible decisions, it is necessary that we have given you (and we have given) time.

At the time there are some operations required for the release form. For example, the ability to wait. We know that “I want it now” is the slogan of young children and those who believe that have not matured properly. Probably one of the most important things we have to learn. If nothing else, because the passage of instant gratification waiting, symbolization and mediation of reasoned action is one of the factors that define us as human. Between us, the stimulus does not necessarily awaken an immediate and automatic. It is in the space between stimulus and response that we have built throughout the culture.

That means a long road of learning, based on maturing capacities ranging from the biological and psychological. Sometimes we tend to imagine the figure of the “wise old man” as someone who has reached a certain “impasibildad”. Beyond some accents of the Eastern worldview present in these images, it is true that this takes away from things and pressures is one of the aspects highlighted in all those characters that can be linked to the “reasonableness” and “prudence”. At least in regard to the capability of not guided by the first pulse. The wise man, mature, “think” before acting. “It takes time.”

Is it obvious to note that all this involves a series of operations that are very difficult in the current “digital culture”? The time for reflection is not in any way time perception and immediate response from computer games, communications “on line” operations in which all the important thing is to “stay connected” and ” act quickly. ” It is not to ban the kids to play with electronic machines, but to find ways to generate in them the ability to differentiate the various logical and uniquely apply digital speed all walks of life.

Also try to be aware of our own tendencies “immediate stimulus-response”. For instance: the rise of home-media-the “opinion”: everyone thinks of everything, knows or does not know, whether or not the evidence. How to give rise to “think”, to talk, to exchange views in order to build strong and responsible positions, when daily mamamos thinking style that gun on the provisional, leaving him and disregard for consistency? Obviously we can not be part of the “information society” in which we live, but what we can do is “take time” to analyze, display options, see consequences, exchange views, other voices .. . arming and go, that way, the discursive framework on which decisions will be possible to produce “conservative”.

Taking time to wait is also taking time to build. The really important things take time: to learn a trade or profession, to know a person and establish a lasting relationship of love or friendship, to know how to distinguish the important from the expendable …

You know very well that there are things that you can not rush into the classroom. Each kid has their time, each group has its own rhythm … Last year I talked about the difference between “bear fruit” and “produce results.” Well, one of the differences is just the quality of time involving both purposes. In the production of results, one can provide for more efficient and to rationalize-time, in the result pending, no. You just wait: not in our hands the time, pace. It implies humility, patience, attention and listen.
The Gospel gives us the beautiful picture of the Holy Family “taking his time”, leaving Jesus was maturing, “increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men” (Lk 23, 52). The same time God made the main focus of his plan of salvation. Waiting for your town and symbolizes concentrated in the hopes of Mary and Joseph with the child who “takes time” to mature their identity and mission, and later, and man, makes waiting for “their time” an essential aspect of his public life.

Now, is there any difference at this point, among the fruits that ripen in a certain time and people need time to mature their freedom? What is it that makes us time to have an important role?

Time is essential, but not only in both magnitude “chronological” quantitative. “Time is experience,” yes, but only if one was given the opportunity to “experience the experience”. That is, it is not just that “things happen”, but to appropriate the meaning and message of the things that happen. Weather makes sense within an activity of the spirit, in which memory play, fantasy, intuition, the ability to judge … Few have delved so deeply for and as beautiful as St. Augustine:

“What then is time? If no one asks me, I know if I want to explain to me who you ask, I do not know. (…) The past and the future, how are because the past is no longer, and the future is not yet? There are three tenses: present to past, present of the present and the future present. There are, indeed, in the soul, in a way, these three modes of time and do not see elsewhere: the present of the past, memory, the present of the present, is the vision and the present of the future, is waiting. “(Confessions, Book XI. Emphasis mine).
Maturation in time is, in man, much more than the passing of a biological program objective. Is “distension of the soul”, St. Augustine said, that is, the experience of time is in the soul, in their movements and in their activity. In effect, “grow” over time is to play the “memory”, “vision” and “expected”. For the forgetful, for it does not keep track of what has happened and their own internal events, time is a mere meaningless flow. Without memory, we live a mere present without density, a mind that is always beginning, empty. Being “immature” is, at this point, just always “just landed”, not having the support of remembered experiences and weighted to the need to respond to the challenges of reality.

Sometimes we tell ourselves that we are a people immature. But that will not be because we have a brief history yet, but we have failed to ruminate that story. Little is what we learned, and we tend to stumble over and over again in the same stone. As we learn, as we do not we cut on the back of previous experiences have much to teach us, we only have one this gap, the present “any longer”, this consumerism, wastefulness, the desire for easy money, the irresponsibility (total, who will remember?) or, in an attempt to protect the immediate present of mutual distrust and skepticism.

To remember, to keep alive the memory of the triumphs and failures, moments of happiness and suffering, is the only way not to be as “children” in the worst sense of the word: immature, inexperienced, extremely vulnerable victims of any lure that comes our coated colored lights. Or as “old” in the sense also sadder: disbelievers, armored bitterness. The “selective memory” also breaks the data they mature, the heart moments, episodes of disfiguring the whole life. It creates a kind of mythological creature: half lived reality, part fantasy (call forward, ideology, desire). Furthermore it should be noted that the handling of memory is never innocent, rather it is dishonest.
So wait, the future present in the soul, according to St. Augustine? How can there experience and wisdom if we know where we want to go, where to look to choose from the possibilities that arise, in which direction and bet planting and building? The temporal dimension of maturity also means having the “relaxation” of waiting: turn desire into hope. This, as a moment of decision, as currently only the freedom to choose, diluted without the ability to see what we want in the tiniest movement and now have tiny seeds in his hands. Seeds that rule out, moves that would leave lost if we could feed the expectation that from them, and mediating time and new decisions, can grow well we want and we have learned to actively wait. And so, we still says St. Augustine, this is “vision” of what was, what is and, above all, of what can be. Custom field of freedom of spirit proper field. In this aspect of vision lies the contemplatividad dimension, a necessary element of maturity.

Without this combination of past, present and future, is given in conjunction activity of the human soul, no project possible. Only improvisation. Delete what happened before to rewrite what someone without handles erase morning. Is not it time to learn to project, wait and sustain the effort and the wait? Returning to the starting point of our reflection: is not there something about this in the terrible vulnerability that our children and teens live? Are not they looking out to life without a “story” that allows them to build their identity and outline your options? And it is not advertised and worn back to topic of “end of story”, it was not simply the violent introduction of a single story, a “story”, yes, “timeless”, based on blind trust in laws relating to wealth, to oblivion and the illusion that the avalanche of consumer goods was really the promised land. “Tale” that no one had ever confirmed, a collective illusion that only burying degrading memory and hope could be believed. This happens when ideology focuses all human activity and imposes a dogmatism that knows no memory or reality or vision. The current “progresismos teens” block all real human progress and, for the sake of a supposed progress but without the force of memory, reality and vision, set of different style totalitarianism but as cruel as the twentieth century totalitarianism driven by the “democratic” gurus thought. They confuse the maturation process of individuals and peoples with a canned cannery.

Today we have the opportunity to realize one of the most horrific consequences of the disorientation of adults: the death of children. If there is no past, not learned, if there is no future, no bet neither is prepared. We were all hanging out of nothing, that liar timelessness of the screens. Everything today, especially now, what else matters? And could not the slap stick today, lost. He missed. It has no place, no time. Wander through the streets and no one will see it, like children who ask galore hit a coin or a payphone to squeeze pennies today. Children out of time, children who have not been given the time they needed. Or as teens who do not know what to expect and have no where to learn, with absent fathers or empty, with a society that excludes or expels them and puts them in the place of victims or victimizers (deciding the side, often, by the color of their skin) instead of recognizing them as full subjects of future … community as long as they supply what they need to do.

That same immediacy that has teenagers today, just today, believe that can be satisfied with any products that are offered today, because you have to sell today, whether the boy lives tomorrow or not, whether growing or not, if you learn or not. Teenagers, in exasperation this only horizon, are often victims / perpetrators of compulsion to have a weight today for whatever and in any manner whatsoever, even the worst, raffling his life and that of others because anyway, who cares about tomorrow? Today, just today, reaching a kill to make money, just as larger ones have left to die (or killed) to be an infinitely more money.

It is the law of life … when no “relaxation of the soul”. When the past is no “memory” and the future is not “expect”, this is not “vision” but mortal blindness.

But allow me one last precision: “take time” is not the same as “letting be.” Monitoring is an essential aspect of waiting. Jesus himself, aware of his “hour”, not save images to plant in his disciples the parable of the servants waiting for their master, of virgins awaiting the bridegroom wisely and prudently and not. This is where we see very clearly the virtuality of the present time: not only vision, but a gift. This is what we get for not letting past becomes uselessly, but to become future … acting.

To conclude this section: freedom is fully met, “maturely”, when responsible freedom. That’s when it becomes a meeting point between the three dimensions of time. A freedom that recognizes what he did and what he did (from present to past), appropriates their decisions on the corresponding moment (the present) and is responsible for the consequences (from present to future). That’s a mature freedom.
MATURITY implies freedom
A second dimension of maturity was related to the tension between individual and community. Tension, we can point out from the outset, is at least inevitable, in the sense that definitely can not exist without each other, and vice versa.

But salteémonos basic issues implicit in this topic (moreover, sufficiently articulated in the biblical and the vision of the man, unique person and be social at the same time) to ask hard by the relationship between “being a mature “(ie, according to the second meaning of the Dictionary, possessing” good judgment or prudence, good sense “) and be somebody” adapted to society. ”

In a first and rapid approach, seem to have the maturity to do with that “adaptation”. At least once commonly linked to “immature” with “misfit”. Sometimes (even in our institutions), the concept of “immaturity” serves to stigmatize not morally condemn you exit “expected”, which acts in a surprising or inappropriate for the common criteria. “Not a bad person, just a little immature.” Is not that a very effective way to talk with us?
With this, the problem is twofold. First, it is not appropriate to speak of an immature person, but immature behavior. And yet, not so easy to define where is the criterion that discriminates one and other behaviors. Who defines what is “mature”, ie, to what to “adapt”? Will the “authority”? Does the “majority”? Do you “created”?

The criterion that assimilates maturity adaptation becomes particularly complicated if we take as examples some situations. Not so long ago, the authority in our country say that “silence is health” and made him feel. However, there were those who raised their voice for human rights and against outrages, the poor and those who did not agree with the dominant ideology. Another example is probably “most” deems “adapted to the world we live in” do a little “gift” to the traffic officer or inspector to pay a hefty fine in the appropriate office. Is it a matter of “immature” refusal to enter into this web of corruption, not “accepted” less pernicious? But then, here is the figure of “instituted”, in this case, the traffic law or regulation enabling businesses or clubs. Spite of them many Argentines, the “adapted” (and “mature”) and would not side but widespread corrupt practices, but what the law requires, though little is accomplished. And yet, the thing becomes complicated when subjects are forced to act against the laws on behalf of what they consider fair. It is the history of the labor movement worldwide: how much struggle, how much suffering, how many deaths even took the recognition of the legitimacy of protection to workers and their families, for the regulation of child labor, etc., against the rapacity of capitalism of the time, which had generated its own legality? Can be said that those pioneers in the struggle for the dignity of human labor were people “immature”?

Christians should be the first (and not always are!) Hasty in rejecting the identification between “mature” and “adaptation”. Jesus, no less, could have made for many in his time in the paradigm of misfit and, therefore, the immature. This is demonstrated by the Gospels themselves, to record the reactions to their practices (“He is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of publicans and sinners”, Mt 11, 19) and before his break with the institutional (“When his relatives heard , came to take him, they said, “is an exalted ‘” Mk 3, 21 and Jesus’ answer about his “real family”, 33-35). The same is implied in his controversy with the Pharisees and the chief priests concerning the Law and the Temple. We could read the Gospels complete, and particularly that of John, as an attempt to answer this question to the Lord: “By what authority are you doing these things? Who gave you authority to do them? “(Mk 11, 28). At that time, in which there was a scientific mentality and not even humanist in the modern sense, was not considered “immature” to somehow defying the authority, instituted or most, but “demonized” (Jn 8 , 48. 52) or “blasphemer” (Jn 10, 33). Thus, the reaction to the attitude of Jesus culminating in accusations of blasphemy fatal first (Mt 26, 65-66) and then in rebellion against Caesar (Jn19, 12-15).

What about St. Paul, undesirable for many situations the establishment to the point of imprisonment, stoning and finally execution? And by so many martyrs and confessors, confronting the criteria and values ​​of his time, and bring upon themselves the wrath of power? All things considered, the Saints have always been a thorn in the side of his contemporaries. And it can not be otherwise, given the source of Jesus’ authority, which transcends all “good judgment” possible in this world.

If maturity was plainly adaptation, the purpose of our educational work would “adapt” the guys, these “creatures anarchic”, good standards of society, whatever. To what cost? At the cost of a gagging and submission of subjectivity. Or worse at the cost of depriving himself of the most sacred and the person: their freedom. Tremendous challenge, then, education and freedom, as it will in all of us, teachers and trainers, pastors and teachers, a devoted relativizing way we look and feel to prepare us to the humble and sincere search for truth .

In an indirect way, then, we see that maturity entails more than the “adaptation” to a prevailing model, the ability to make himself into position from the particular situation in which one finds oneself. That is, the possession of freedom to choose and decide according to their own experience and desire, in line with the values ​​they adhere.


Maturity is full sway IN LOVE

Now, does this mean that all automatic canonization subjectivism, all eccentricity, of any claim of the individual as such?
No way. The question that contemporaries did Jesus was itself invalid. His words and deeds could not be presented as pure break: must have a referral from Truth. The moment “negative” criticism, of rebellion, of subjectivity as refusal of submission, can rely only upon “positive” transcendence, the trend towards greater universality, to fuller truth. It is not power that have rejected the martyrs was the power that benefited only a few. Law is not what Jesus fought: it was the law that was put over the recognition of others. Not most of the witness denies the truth: it is most deprived while visibility and word to everything else, the other presences and the other voices.

Put another way: freedom is not an end in itself, a black hole behind which there is nothing. It orders the fuller life of man, the whole man and all men. It is governed by love as unconditional affirmation of life and the value of each and every one. In that sense, we may still another step in our reflection: maturity involves not only the ability to decide freely, to be subject to their own choices among the many historical situations and settings in which we meet including, but includes the full affirmation of love as a link between humans. In the various ways in which this link is made: interpersonal, intimate, social, political, intellectual …

It is nothing but the idea that we have presented a “responsible freedom”. To whom will we be responsible, but to the other and to ourselves as members of the human family? Stop!, Say. Are we not responsible, first of all, before God? Yes, of course. The truth is that we see God as through a mirror dimly … And the most definitive test of the accuracy and truth of our responsibility to the test remains the love of neighbor (1 Jn 4, 20) lived from the inmost truth of our consciousness (1 Jn 3, 21-24) to the more specific and effective works that show our faith (James 2: 18). A mature personality and is one that has managed to insert his one-off community of peers. The difference is not enough: you must also recognize the similarity.

What does this mean for our vocation and task of Christian teaching?

It implies the need to build and rebuild social ties and community broken rampant individualism. A society, a people, a community, not just a collection of individuals who do not bother each other. The negative definition of freedom, which claims that it ends when it touches the edge of the other, it is halfway. Why do I want a freedom that locks me in the cell of my individuality, leaving others out, which prevents me from opening the doors and sharing with the neighbor? What kind of desirable society is one where everyone enjoys their property only, and for which the other is a potential enemy until I prove that cares anything about me?

I wish I understood: Christians who are not going to fall into a romantic and naive conception of human nature. Beyond the historical formulations, the belief in original sin wants to realize that every man or woman in a huge capacity nests well … and also bad. No one is immune, in each such can nest also the worst enemy, even to himself.

But this consideration, realistic or theological, as desired, is only the starting point. Because from there will have to think what the task of man in history, the company of human communities, the aim of civilization: the danger of simply punishing each other limiting the potential for conflict, or rather promote higher human capacities in order to a growth of communion, love and mutual recognition point to building a positive relationship and not merely as negative?

Much has been advanced, and much remains to be advancing in the task of bringing to light the many situations of violations to the dignity of people and especially of the most vulnerable and subjected punished. Particularly important has been the progress in the awareness of children’s rights, equal rights of man and woman, the rights of minorities. But we must go a step further: not through the enthronement of individualism that will place the rights of the person. The top right of a person not only prevent you from anyone achieve their purposes, but actually do them. Not enough to prevent injustice, if not promote justice. Not enough to protect children from neglect, abuse and mistreatment, if you educate young people for a full and comprehensive love to future children. If no offers families resources all they need to fulfill their vital mission. If society is favored in all a welcoming attitude and love of life of each and every one of its members, through the various means by which the State must contribute.

A mature person, a mature society, then, is one whose freedom is fully responsible from love. And that grows only in the shoulders of the roads. Means investing a lot of work, patience, great sincerity, humility, great magnanimity.



How can we turn these ideas into concrete leads to Christian educators we launch the postponed tasks that we require?

a) Strengthen the Church community

First, I think it is essential to strengthen the sense of Church among ourselves. There is no other place to get to listen to what God tells us in the current reality within the believing community. The humble church community real and concrete, not desired or dreamed. With its flaws and sins, in the midst of a never-ending process of penance and conversion, seeking new and better ways to communicate with each other, fraternal correction, solidarity, loyalty and growth in wisdom … Perhaps many Christians, to the painful divisions and sins being experienced by the church body, become discouraged and look outside the community conducting pathways commitment on the other. But maybe that way is deprived of the wealth that only in the believing community will find. Not all think alike, and sometimes the differences seem irreconcilable. Not all act as we should, and we all fully practice the Word through us. But that should not be a barrier to keep praying, talking, working to make that Word become incarnate and shine for all. Perhaps the first bet, the first search, is that of realizing a more ecclesial community repetuosa other, less judgmental and more mature in faith, love and service.

b) Test new forms of dialogue in pluralistic society

Second, create a sense of responsible freedom in love in the relationship between different groups in our society. This task is particularly important for us, as a social and cultural changes that are occurring in our country, as they have in other parts of the world, we face the need to find new forms of dialogue and coexistence in a pluralistic society, through which come to accept and respect differences and enhance the spaces and meeting topics and coincidence. Many Christians work side by side with brothers of other denominations or religious groups, or political and social movements in human advocacy and service to the needy! Perhaps there is brewing a new way of relating, to help rebuild the social bond between the Argentines and expand our consciousness of solidarity beyond all boundaries religious, ideological and political.

c) Revitalizing specifically theological dimension of our motivation

Thirdly, I would like to point briefly to the highest dimension of maturity, which is holiness. If all this reflection does not move us Christians to return again and again the ultimate motivation of our existence, will have stopped half way. For the Christian, the performance of free time is fulfilled by model Eucharist: proclamation of salvation made “today” in Christ and by faith each (in word and deed), that “fulfills” the past of the history of salvation and “anticipate” the definitive future. Hope in its fullest theological sense thus becomes key to the Christian experience of time, focusing on adherence to the person of the Risen.

It is relevant to bear in mind at this point what the Holy Father points us in Mane nobiscum Domine: “Indeed, the Eucharist is a mode of being which passes from Jesus into each Christian, through whose testimony tends to spread throughout society and in culture. To achieve this, it is necessary that the faithful must assimilate, through personal and communal meditation, the values ​​which the Eucharist expresses, the attitudes it inspires, the resolutions to which it gives rise. Why not look at this special setpoint could emerge the Year of the Eucharist “(n.25).

And all this within the community that shares the faith rooted in love. For overcoming the contradiction between the individual and society is not exhausted, from our point of view, a mere search for consensus, but has to go back to the source of all truth. Deepening dialogue fuller access to the truth, deepening our truths in a dialogue that started us but God, and that has its own time and its own pedagogy. A dialogue is a “road to truth together”

d) Establish specific goals in education for maturity

In conclusion, and as placing us in the specific task of the educator, we should try to put in the center of all our activities the integral formation of the person, that is, the contribution to the full development of free men and women and responsible. In this sense, we should be able to ask specific and measurable goals, not to stay in a narcissistic rhetoric. If I may, I can not end this post without suggest some issues arising from the previous reflection, that could vehiculizarse some trainees, other targets, including other transversal content. There are six suggestions:

1) Raise herein to “experience the experience”

The absence of historical memory is a serious flaw in our society. It is also a hallmark of culture by some called “postmodern” youth culture of the “already”. Any reference to history is seen as a purely academic, in the most sterile of the word “history.” I think it is essential to awaken in our children the ability to connect with the motivations, choices and actions of those who came before us, discovering the undeniable relationship between them and the present. Know and be able to take position on past events is the only way to build a meaningful future. And this should not be only the content of a specific subject, but must go through school life through various activities and in different spaces. In this regard it is essential to contact “classics” of literature, meetings metahistorical dimension of social life of the people.

2) Helping to live the present as a gift
If God comes to us in the concrete history, this is the point where we accept the gift and give you our answer. This means going beyond skepticism that pervades our culture today, and beyond a certain omnipotence typically Argentina. Live the present as a gift is receive with humility and make it produce. In the message that I dedicated two years ago I developed this theme of the relationship between continuity and novelty in historical creation. I invite you to pick up and find ways to encourage our young people with huge potential transformer is in your hands, not so much through speeches and speeches but summoning them to develop experiences and situations that allow them to discover their own capabilities.

3) To develop the capacity for critical judgment to exit the “dictatorship of opinion”
Let us not tire of asking again and again whether we simply transmitting information instead of educating for freedom, which requires the ability to understand and critique situations and speeches. If we live increasingly in an “information society” saturates us indiscriminate data, all at the same level, the school would have to SAFEGUARD role of “teaching thinking”, and think critically. To do this, teachers need to be able to show the reasons behind the different choices of reading the world, and to promote the practice of listening to all voices before making judgments. Also, we will help establish evaluative criteria and last step is not always taken into account, highlight how judgment is to leave room for further questions, avoiding the risk of losing vitality absolutize and quickly.

4) Accept and integrate the corporeal reality
Particularly urgent is an accompaniment in the acceptance and integration of corporeality. Paradoxically, today’s culture puts the body in the middle of his speech while he undergoes all sorts of constraints and requirements. An anthropology closer to the new conditions of subjectivity can not leave out a particular job at this point, from all areas that becomes problematic (health, image and identity, sexuality, sport, welfare and leisure, work), and always aiming for a comprehensive release for the love of self, neighbor and God.

5) Enhance social values.
We know that our young people have an enormous capacity to feel the suffering of others and “put the body” in solidarity actions. This social sensitivity, often only emotional, should be educated towards solidarity “background”, you can develop the relationship reflexively obviously painful and unfair situations and discourses and practices that give rise to them or reproduce them. It was from a permanent “back and forth” between genuine human encounter experiences and lighting from the Gospel that we reconstruct the values ​​of solidarity and collective sense of consumerist individualism and competitive recently been mined in our people. Undoubtedly, this will require a deepening and renewal of the Social Doctrine in our context.

6) Insist with the preaching of the kerygma.
All of this will fall on deaf ears if we support our youth on a path of personal conversion to the person and message of Jesus as the ultimate motivation to articulate other aspects. This will require, in addition to personal coherence-no-witness possible without preaching, open and honest search of the ways that religious experience can take in this new century. The conversion, dear friends, is not something that happens once and forever. It is a sign of an authentic Christian life readiness to worship God “in spirit and in truth”, ie the Spirit blows wherever.

Argentina wakes …

Thus we come to the end of our meditation.

We are at a historic moment of pain and hope. We feel that we can not be distracted by the opportunity the Providence gives us to bring our bricks to build a different world.

We shared with the finding of suffering pain and neglect suffered by many of our kids, expressed in a few tragic events of the past year, and we recognized the need to respond to this situation, to take charge in some way, our poverty but also from our hope.

And in that context, we have reflected on the conditions of personal and collective maturity required for this commitment.

Maturity implies a capacity to live long as memory, as vision and as expected, going beyond the immediacy to be able to articulate the best of our memory and our desires in a thoughtful and effective action.

Maturity that unfolds in a freedom that is not subject to any exclusionary particularization, which is deaf to the half-truths and the horizons of cardboard not uncritically adapted to what is current or criticize only highlight their individuality, but aims at finding a universal love and effective underpinning and content to that freedom fully responsible.

And that opens, ultimately, in a renewed ecclesial life of faith and to society as a whole, well grounded in theological and Eucharistic experience.
From there, I proposed six goals for working with children: awaken the memory; help live the present as a gift, to develop the capacity for critical judgment; promote acceptance and integration of corporeal reality; deepen social values ​​and insist with the preaching of the kerygma.

If the reality we are faced with challenges in us a generous and courageous spirit, the present moment has also seen a growing gift to us. It will be so personal and community maturity of our educational communities will transcended, by the grace of God, to an experience of encounter with Him in a life of holiness, response to a gift that precedes and surrounds, sign and anticipation in history fullness of hope.

I take leave of you taking up the words of the Apostle: “Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm and steadfast, steady progress in the work of the Lord, with the certainty that their efforts will not be futile for him” (1Cor 15, 58). And, please, I ask you to pray for me.

At Easter, AD 2005.

Jorge Mario Bergoglio, SJ

Archbishop of Buenos Aires

Posted in 2005

Memorial Mass of John Paul II

April 4, 2005

The Virgin Mary has its roots in the long line of history, of men and women that God told him yes and later in life took that attitude obediential. A row of men and women who began the day our father Abram left his home without knowing where he was going. He obeyed and believed. And today, Solemnity of the Incarnation of the Word, the Son of God also begins this historic road. Sale, it is the Father to do His will.

“You have not wanted to sacrifice or oblation instead have given me a body. So here I am. I come to God, your will. “And Mary, in turn says it be done to me according to your will. Attitude obediential of a walker, a walker, who starts to walk the walk, and in the case the Lord, Isaiah prophesied obediential attitude: “Behold, the virgin is pregnant and will give birth to a son and will call him by the name of Emmanuel which means, God with us.”

God gets into this human caravan, gets into this road and follow progress with us and God is getting into the cracks of our existence, is one more of us. The Word is anointed, and before being anointed with the oil of choice with our flesh is anointed “to do your will” and so begins the journey of Christ. “To do your will” and end in the critical hours of his life about to be taken prisoner feels that deep agony in the solitude of the forest and in the solitude of his heart: “Father not do what I want but your will “. Consistency obediential a vocation. Coherence who feels called and obeys the call and walks according to his calling, and is one who walks with us. The closeness, projimidad of God walking with us.

I was sent, I have been anointed with the oil of gladness, says the Lord. To release captives, to give sight to the blind, to heal lepers, walk to the weak knees. Anointed to walk along the entire human limitation, all human joy, to every human misery, anointed with the service authority of him who came to walk, to be Emmanuel, God with us to serve. Obediential Attitude of Christ: “You gave me a body and I said I’m here to do your will” is the crux of coherence and consistency not just say Christian but human consistency. And today on this Solemnity of the Annunciation of the Lord we celebrate this coherence.

God wanted to be consistent and shows us the path of consistency. Mary is consistent and shows us the path of consistency, does what he thinks, what he believes proclaims, makes you think. And not only momentous but consistent within itself. Christ think coherently because he thinks what he feels and what he does. Feel coherently because he feels what he thinks and what he does. Work consistently because it makes you feel and what you think. Consistency obediential, transparent consistency, coherence that has nothing to hide, consistency is all good and overcome evil with good consistent that its offer “to do your will,” says the Father.

And on this feast of the Annunciation of the Lord remember another great consistent. Argentina said this writer, the text we read at the beginning of Mass: With this consistent “ends the twentieth century.” Juan Pablo simply was consistent, never cheated, never lied, never chicaneó. Juan Pablo communicated with his people, with the consistency of a man of God, with the consistency of one who every morning spent long hours in adoration, and it was left harmonize adored by the power of God. Coherence is not purchased, the consistency is not studied in any race. Coherence is carving in the heart with worship, with the anointing to serve others and rectitude of conduct. No lies, no deception, no bending. Nathanael Jesus said once when she was walking, “Behold an Israelite law without bending. “I think we can say of John Paul, the consistent. But because it was consistent chiseling left by the will of God. was left humiliated by the will of God. stopped to grow in his soul that had that attitude obediential our father Abraham, and from there all that followed.

Consistent recall a man who once told us that this world does not need teachers, needs witnesses, and consistent is a witness. A man who puts his eggs in one basket and endorse his flesh and his whole life, with its transparency, what he preaches.

On the day of the proclamation of this coherence obediential in the Incarnation of the Word we watch this consistent. This coherent sheer consistency is smeared hands, saved us a fratricidal slaughter, this coherent enjoyed taking the kids in arms because he believed in the tenderness. This consistent that more than once he brought men from the street, here we hobos, Piazza Risorgimento to speak and give them a new life conditions. This coherent when health became asked permission to go to jail to speak with the man who had tried to kill him.

It is a witness. I end by repeating his words: “What this world needs are not teachers are witnesses.” And in the Incarnation of the Word, Christ is the faithful witness. Today we see in John Paul a faithful imitation of this witness. And thank you ended his life well, consistently, that has completed its life as just that: a faithful witness.

Posted in 2005
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