The internet is a flurry with discussion and every opinion under the moon on the papal documents, ‘Amoris Laetitia’ or ‘The Joy of Love,’ that was released last week. A simple search can find every angle you could possibly imagine on the document.
You can throw your own thoughts into the never ending discussion threads until everyone tires of their own voice only to realize in the end there is only one bottom line from this beloved Pope; love wins.
Titled appropriately ‘The Joy of Love,’ he is reminding us that no matter what, our lives begin and end in love. It is up to you to recognize it, embrace it and choose to live it fully in your faith above and beyond what the ‘rules’ tell us on a daily basis. For when we trap ourselves into staying behind such rules, we often miss out on the greatest gifts in life.
I don’t believe he diminished what our faith has been for endless years, rather remind us Jesus’ message from the very first day of His asking us to follow Him; love.
We are called to care for our brothers and sisters, not condemn them in their struggles, pain or weariness. I feel like he is reminding us to not lose sight of our own weaknesses, to walk humbly with our faithful who have lost their way and who may not know this love. They are coming to you with courage; do not reject them in their time of isolation, darkness and fear, rather embrace their strength and willingness to take a step forward with the same love Jesus extends to you and I.
Pope Francis is reminding us that we must pause and look at our neighbor in the age of today, rather than that of yesterday; for times, thoughts, visions and realities evolve and change regularly. We must learn to adjust as life does on a continuous basis, rather than trap ourselves in the comfort of stagnation.
When the conversations begin on the intense topics within this document, within the church, within whatever belief you follow…be sure to interject love. Center one’s tone with love and you will be walking as Christ truly did with the people, not against or above them.
He is simply reminding us we are to take time in our own lives for personal discernment regularly, not just following as we always have because that is where it all began. Challenge. Question. Welcome our neighbor.
Be an apostle today.
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