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Pope in Alessano: Don Tonino Bello, “help us to be a contempl-active Church”, one that feels “ashamed of immobility and justifications”

“From this beloved land, what could Don Tonino still say to us?”. Pope Francis asked this question towards the end of his first speech delivered in the Salento region of Italy. “This believer with his feet on the ground and his eyes in Heaven, and above all with a heart that connected Heaven and earth, coined, among many others, an original word, which gives each of us a great mission”, Pope Francis recalled in the town of Alessano: “He liked to say that we Christians ‘must be contempl-active, with a “c”, that is, people who start from contemplation and then let their dynamism, their commitment to action, flow’, people who never separate prayer and action”. “Dear Don Tonino – the Pope continued, addressing the late Bishop of Molfetta in friendly terms -, you warned us against immersing ourselves in the whirlwind of affairs without planting ourselves in front of the tabernacle, so as not to deceive ourselves of working in vain for the Kingdom. And we can ask ourselves if we start from the tabernacle or from ourselves. You could also ask us if, once we set out, we walk; if, like Mary, the Woman of the path, we arise to reach and serve man, every man”. “If you asked, we would have to feel ashamed of our immobility and our constant justifications”, Pope Francis admitted: “Give us again, then, our high vocation; help us to be increasingly a contempl-active Church, in love with God and impassioned about humanity!”.


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