‘We need to renew our amazement’ – Pope Francis

Pope Francis leads a special audience to deliver a Christmas message to Vatican workers in Paul VI hall at the Vatican December 21, 2018. REUTERS/Tony Gentile

The Pope’s New Year homily has focused on the importance of renewing our amazement and of a mother’s gaze guiding people to a better future.

He recalls how the shepherds were amazed at the news of the birth of Jesus Christ and how the event should help direct how we see the New Year, as an opportunity of a new start.

He explains how amazement needs to be regained both in people’s faith and the renewal of the church. Without regaining the feeling, life is dull. As for the church, he explains that the church itself needs to renew its own amazement with the living god or ‘risk becoming a museum of the past.’ It gives people a feeling of home, where newness dwells, he says.

The Pope also speaks of the mother’s gaze given from the Virgin Mary to Jesus and how her eyes are ‘full of grace, reflecting the beauty of good and a reflection of heaven.’ This he believes has great relevance for today has be believes the world needs a mother.

He explains that something that is really needed is tenderness, ‘a word that many want to erase from the dictionary.

Faith therefore comes from the mother of God and it ensures that people can never lose their centre. Without a mother’s gaze, people become short-sighted and only concerned with their own interests and not of everyone, a ‘world materially rich but poor with the future.’

The mother of god teaches us that she embraces us regardless of events good or bad and that she is present throughout life, guiding us along the path of goodness. ‘She is not optional’, he says.

In concluding, the Pope calls to Mary, ‘Take us by the hand Mary, Help us pass safely through the straits of history and show us tenderness of human love where the human family is born.’