Pope Francis: It is Sad to See ‘Watered Down Christians’
Reflects on the Need to Be in a Constant State of Renewal During Sunday Angelus
By Junno Arocho Esteves
VATICAN CITY, August 31, 2014 (Zenit.org) – The Gospel, the Eucharist and Prayer are the three gifts that allows us to walk the path of Christ and not of the world. This was the theme of Pope Francis’ address during Sunday’s Angelus.
The Holy Father reflected on today’s Gospel from St. Matthew, where Jesus tells his disciples that He must go to Jerusalem to suffer, die and rise from the dead. When Peter rebukes Him, Jesus in turn reproaches him saying “Get behind me, Satan! You are an obstacle to me. You are thinking not as God does, but as human beings do.”
This critical moment, the Holy Father noted, speaks to the reality of Christians today who run the risk of becoming worldly, or “watered down.”
“It is sad to find watered down Christians, who are like watered wine,” he said. “You can’t tell whether they are Christian or worldly.”
“It is sad to find Christians that are no longer the salt of the Earth. And we know that when salt loses its flavor, it is no longer useful. Their salt has lost its flavor because they are committed to the spirit of this world. That is, they have become worldly.”
The Pope emphasized the need for Christians to be in a constant state of renewal. In order to achieve this, he highlighted three gifts, the first being, to read and meditate on the Gospel.
“Remember, it would help you to carry a Gospel with you, a small book of Gospels, in your pocket or in your purse, and read a small passage during the day. But always the Gospel because it is carrying the Word of Jesus and being able to read it,” he reminded the faithful.
Receiving the Eucharist, especially during Sunday Mass, and spending several days of retreat, he added, “are very important for spiritual renewal.”
“Gospel, Eucharist, Prayer. Do not forget: Gospel, Eucharist and Prayer. Thanks to these gifts from the Lord, we can conform not to the world, but to Christ, and to follow Him on His path, the path of “losing one’s own life” in order to find it,” he said.
Concluding his address, Pope Francis told the faithful that through these three gifts, all Christians can follow the path of Christ, who gave his life, thus purifying us and freeing us from selfishness.
“The Virgin Mary always precedes us on this path; let us be guided and accompanied by Her,” he concluded before reciting the Angelus prayer.
— — —
On ZENIT’s webpage:
For the full translation of the Holy Father’s address, go to: