'Know Jesus,' Pope urges during daily homily

Pope Francis celebrates Mass at the Basilica of St John Lateran on April 7 2013 Credit Stephen Driscoll CNA 3 CNA 4 8 13 Pope Francis celebrates Mass at the Basilica of St. John Lateran on April 7, 2013 | Stephen Driscoll/CNA.

In his daily homily Pope Francis stressed the importance of having a personal encounter with Jesus, and said that there are three languages needed in order to get to know him.

"Some people begin to feel afraid of this man," said the Pope in reference to Herod's question of Jesus' identity in the gospel, "because he could have led them to a political conflict with the Romans."

One might wonder, he said, "Who is this man, who makes so many problems?"

The Holy Father spoke to those in attendance of his Sept. 26 daily Mass in the chapel of the Santa Marta guest residence in the Vatican.

"You cannot know Jesus without having problems," said the Holy Father, "But if you want to have a problem, go to the street to know Jesus – you'll end up having not one, but many! But that is the way to get to know Jesus!"

"You cannot know Jesus in first class! One gets to know Jesus in going out (into) every day (life). You cannot get to know Jesus in peace and quiet, nor even in the library: Know Jesus."

Pope Francis then noted that the languages of "mind, heart and action" are necessary in order for every Christian in building their relationship with the Son of Man.

Drawing attention to the Catechism of the Catholic Church as an exceptional resource for knowing our faith, the Holy Father emphasized that there is much to learn about Jesus by reading it, and urged those present to both study and read it.

"We know the Son of God, who came to save us, we understand the beauty of the history of salvation, of the love of the Father, studying the Catechism," he said, asking those present "how many people have read the Catechism of the Catholic Church since it was published over 20 years ago?"

The Holy Father stressed that although resources such as the Catechism are important, it is only a step in getting to know Jesus, and that knowing him in the mind is not enough.

"It is necessary to get to know Jesus in dialogue with Him."

"If you do not pray," urged the Pontiff, "if you do not talk with Jesus, you do not know Him. You know things about Jesus, but you do not go with that knowledge, which He gives your heart in prayer."

Pope Francis went on to say that if one studies the Catechism and prays frequently it is it is still not sufficient, and that if one truly desires to know Jesus "it is by following Him" that it will happen.

It is necessary "to go, to walk along the streets, journeying," urged the Pope, "It is necessary to know Jesus in the language of action."

"One cannot know Jesus without getting oneself involved with Him, without betting your life (on) Him."

The Holy Father concluded his reflections by returning to Herod's question about the identity of Jesus, saying that many people today, "including us," ask the same thing, to which the Word of God responds "You want to know who He is? Read what the Church tells you about Him, talk to Him in prayer and walk the street with him."

"This is the way! Everyone must make his choice."

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