During his daily homily Pope Francis reflected on the nature of what it means to be a Christian, saying that an authentic follower of Christ is able to endure difficulties with a positive attitude.
The Pope imparted his message to those gathered in the Vatican’s Santa Marta guesthouse for his daily Mass on Sept. 27.
Stressing the need and importance of sacrifice in the Christian’s life of faith, the Pope began his homily by reflecting on the Gospel reading from St. Luke where Jesus asks his disciples who they think he is.
Pope Francis recounted how it was after this question that Peter replies with his declaration that Jesus is the Christ, but that once Jesus warns of his upcoming passion and death, “Peter was frightened and scandalized.”
This attitude, said the pontiff, is “just like many Christians” who declare that “this will never happen to you, I will follow you up to this point.”
“This is the temptation of a spiritual wellbeing.”
Just like the rich young man from the gospel, “who wanted to follow Jesus but only up to a certain point,” the Pope explained that “the scandal of the Cross continues to block many Christians” who complain about the wrongdoings and insults they suffer, rather than following the way of the cross.
“The proof if somebody is a true Christian is his or her ability to endure humiliations with joy and patience.”
Concluding his homily, the Holy Father emphasized that it is our own choice “whether to be a Christian of well-being or a Christian close to Jesus,” who walks with him along the path of the cross.