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Quotes and news

The following quotes are taken from speeches and homilies made by Pope Francis during his pastoral visit to Colombia.

‘Real wealth is diversity’

Addressing Colombia’s leaders on September 7, the Pope said: “I en­courage you to look to those who are excluded and marginalised by society, those who have no value in the eyes of the majority, who are held back, cast aside. Everyone is needed in the work of creating and shaping society. This is not achieved simply with those of ‘pure blood’, but by all. And here lies the greatness and beauty of a country, where all fit in and where all are important. Just like these boys who, through their spontaneity, wanted to make this ceremonial event much more human. All are important. Real wealth is diversity.”

No watered-down compromise

Addressing Colombia’s bishops on September 7, the Pope said: “So continue to seek communion among yourselves. Never tire of building it through frank and fraternal dialogue, avoiding hidden agendas like the plague. Make every effort to take the first step, trying to understand each other’s way of thinking. Allow yourselves to be enriched by what others can offer you and build a Church that can offer this country an eloquent witness of the progress that can be made when things are not left in the hands of a small group... So do not rest content with a watered-down compromise that leaves the minority quietly impotent while dampening those hopes that should be courageously entrusted to God’s power rather than to our own weak efforts.”

Be not afraidof renewal

In his homily in Medellin on September 8, the Pope said: “As Jesus ‘shook’ the doctors of the law to break them free of their rigidity, now also the Church is ‘shaken’ by the Spirit in order to lay aside comforts and attachments. We should not be afraid of renewal. The Church al­ways needs renewal. She does not renew herself on her own whim, but rather does so ‘firm in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the gospel’. Renewal entails sacrifice and courage, not so that we can consider ourselves superior or flawless, but rather to respond better to the Lord’s call. The Lord of the Sabbath, the reason for our commandments and prescriptions, invites us to reflect on regulations when our following him is at stake; when his open wounds and his cries of hunger and thirst for justice call out to us and demand new responses.

(Compiled by Fr Joe Borg)

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