God does not charge an entrance fee

The Pope saying mass at Santa Marta on Tuesday

“The Lord waits for you in a special way because you are bad,” said Pope Francis during the Mass he celebrated this morning, November 5, 2019, at Casa Santa Marta in the Vatican.

“The feast is a figure of Heaven, of eternity with the Lord,” and it is free, stressed the Holy Father, meditating on today’s Gospel (Luke 14:15-24). “Our God invites us always like this; He doesn’t charge us an entrance fee. In true feasts, one doesn’t pay an entrance fee: the Master pays, He who invites pays.”

In the face of the gratuitousness and the universality of the feast, the Pope noted “an attitude that shrinks the heart: “I’m not going there. I prefer to stay alone, with those that please me, closed . . . don’t bother me with your feast.’” It’s sin: “the sin of the people of Israel, the sin of us all — closure.”

Everybody is invited

“On the path of life, we will often be faced with this choice, with this option,” he warned. “Either the gratuity of the Lord, to go to the Lord, to encounter the Lord, or to close myself in my things, in my interest. It’s because of this that the Lord, — speaking of one of these closures –, says it is very difficult for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. There are good rich men, saints, who aren’t attached to wealth, but the majority are attached to wealth — closed. They can’t understand what the feast is, but they have the security of things that they can touch.”

“Everyone is invited. No one can say: ‘I am bad, I can’t . . . ‘ No. The Lord waits for you in a special way because you are bad.”

In conclusion, Pope Francis suggested an examination of conscience. “How is our life going? What do I prefer: to accept the Lord’s invitation always or close myself in things, in my little things? Let us ask the Lord for the grace to accept always to go to His feast which is free.”