Religious applaud Pope Francis’ request for short homilies

Bratislava, 13 Sept. 02/21:00 pm (ACI).- Pope Francis gave a speech on the evangelizing mission of the Church that generated applause, especially from the religious, when he spoke about the homilies in the meeting with the bishops, the clergy and the consecrated in his second day of your visit to Slovakia.

Francis did not stick to the official speech and spoke about the importance of “finding new ways, ways and languages ​​to announce the Gospel” through creativity, following the example of Saints Cyril and Methodius, inventors of the Cyrillic alphabet used in majority Slavic countries Christian orthodox.

“We can help, with human creativity, because each one of us has this possibility. But the great creative is the Holy Spirit: it is He who moves us to be creative”, said Francisco, on September 13th.

The Pope affirmed that, “if with our preaching and with our pastoral ministry we are not able to enter more by the ordinary way, let us try to open different spaces, try other paths”.

“Here I make a parenthesis” on “preaching,” said the pope.

“Someone told me that, in the evangelii gaudium, I stopped too much on the homily. Because it’s one of the problems of this time. The homily is not a sacrament as some Protestants claimed, but it is a sacramental. And it’s not a Lenten preaching, it’s something else. It is at the heart of the Eucharist. And let’s think of the faithful who have to listen to 40-minute, 50-minute homilies about arguments that they don’t understand, that don’t move them. Please, priests and bishops, think carefully about how to give the homily, how to prepare it so that there is contact with people and be inspired by the biblical text”.

Francisco said that “a homily, many times, should not be longer than 10 minutes, because people, after 8 minutes, lose attention. Unless it’s very interesting right? The time should be 10 to 15 minutes, no more”.

Then, the pope told of a memory: “a professor I had of homiletics said that a homily should have internal coherence: an idea, an image and a feeling. Let people leave with an idea, an image and something that moved their hearts. The proclamation of the Gospel is as simple as that, and Jesus preached in this way”, he used “concrete things that people understood”.

“I’m sorry to come back to this subject, but I’m worried”, said Francisco, whose words were interrupted by the applause, to which he replied: “I allow myself an evil: the nuns started with the applause, because they are the victims of our homilies, isn’t it?”.

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