“The whole journey of life is a journey of preparation” for heaven, Pope Francis said during his homily at Friday morning Mass.
The Pope reflected on the Gospel passage from St. John for today in which Jesus tells the disciples not to be afraid or troubled because he goes to prepare a place in the Father’s house for them.
“Prepare a place means preparing our ability to enjoy the chance, our chance, to see, to feel, to understand the beauty of what lies ahead, of that homeland towards which we walk,” he remarked.
Members of the Vatican Typography office attended the Eucharistic celebration on April 26, alongside the Vatican Labor Office and Vatican State Police inside St. Martha’s House chapel.
The Pope noted that Jesus talks “like a friend, even with the attitude of a pastor.”
“Let not your hearts be troubled, believe in God, believe also in me,” says Jesus, according to today’s Gospel.
“In my Father’s house there are many rooms, if it were not so would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you?” Christ asked the disciples.
The Pope called these “really beautiful words” and asked the congregation what they thought that “place” was like.
“What does prepare a place mean, does it mean renting a room up there?” he asked.
He explained that life is a journey of preparation that involves expanding our eyes, minds and hearts.
It means “beginning to greet him from afar. This is not alienation: this is the truth, this is allowing Jesus to prepare our hearts, our eyes for the beauty that is so great. It is the path of beauty and ‘the path to the homeland,’” he preached.
But sometimes “the Lord has to do it quickly as he did with the good thief.”
“He only had a few minutes to prepare him and he did it,” he affirmed.
“But Father,” the Pope said recounting a common objection, “I went to a philosopher and he told me that all these thoughts are an alienation, that we are alienated, that life is this, the concrete, and no-one knows what is beyond.”
“Some think this is so but Jesus tells us that it is not so and says ‘have faith in me,’” the Pope stated.
He compared Jesus to an engineer and an architect when he recalled Jesus saying he would prepare a place in his Father’s house.
“And Jesus goes to prepare a place for us,” he concluded.