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Pope Francis: audience, “we need zealous Christians with the courage to say: ‘This is murder!’”. Prayer is not about “making one’s soul appear beautiful”

(Foto Vatican Media/SIR)

“How much we are in need of believers, of zealous Christians, who act before people who have managerial responsibility with the courage to say: ‘This must not be done! This is murder!’”. Pope Francis said this during today’s general audience catechesis devoted to the figure of Elijah, a “man of contemplative life and, at the same time, of active life, preoccupied with the events of his time, capable of clashing with the king and queen after they had Nabot killed to take possession of his vineyard”. “We need people like Elijah”, Pope Francis continued off the cuff, who “shows us that there should be no dichotomy in the life of those who pray: one stands before the Lord and goes towards the brothers to whom He sends us”. “Prayer is not about locking oneself up with the Lord to make one’s soul appear beautiful”, he remarked, continuing off the cuff. “This is false prayer. Prayer is a confrontation with God, and letting oneself be sent to serve one’s brothers and sisters”. “The proof of prayer is the real love of one’s neighbour”, Pope Francis pointed out. “And vice versa: believers act in the world after having first kept silent and prayed; otherwise, their action is impulsive, it is devoid of discernment, it is rushing without a destination”. And when “believers behave in this way, they do so many injustices”, the Pope argued, “because they did not go to pray to the Lord first, to discern what they must do”.

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