Vatican City, Jun 20, 2014 / 10:32 am
In his homily at Friday's Mass, Pope Francis cautioned attendees not to place their security in false treasures which enslave and weigh us down, but rather in the treasures of heaven that lead to freedom.
“Here is the message of Jesus: ‘if your treasure is in wealth, in vanity, in power, in pride, your heart will be chained there! Your heart will be enslaved by wealth, vanity, pride,” the Pope explained in his June 20 Mass.
“And what Jesus wants is that we have a free heart! This is today's message.”
Speaking to those present in the chapel of the Vatican’s Saint Martha guesthouse, the Roman Pontiff centered his reflections on the day’s Gospel, in which Christ warns his disciples not to store up treasure on earth.
This is “a prudent counsel” stated the Pope, noting that when Christ speaks of earthly treasure there are “mainly three,” and Jesus “always came back to the same subject.”
“The first treasure: gold, money, richness. But you are not secure with this because, maybe, they will steal it from you, no? I am not secure with these investments!”
“Maybe the stock market crashes and you remain with nothing! And then tell me, does one more dollar make you happier or not? Wealth, (it is a ) dangerous treasure, dangerous … ”
Acknowledging that although money “serves to do so many good things, to advance the family,” the Bishop of Rome explained that “if you build it up as a treasure, it will steal your soul!”
“Jesus in the Gospel returns to this topic, on wealth, on the danger of richness, on putting one's hope in riches” he noted, stating that two other great temptations are those of vanity and power, which stem from pride.
On the contrary, Christ wants us to have “a free heart” the Pope observed, pointing out that “this is today's message… 'please, have a free heart,' Jesus tells us. He speaks to us of the freedom of the heart.”
Going on, he emphasized that “you can only have a free heart with the treasures of heaven: love, patience, service to others, adoration of God.”
“These are the true riches that cannot be stolen. The other riches weigh down the heart. They weigh down the heart: they chain it, they do not give it freedom!”
Pope Francis then referred to Christs' words that “the lamp of the body is the eye” and that “if your eye is sound, your whole body will be filled with light; but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be in darkness.”
“A luminous heart that is not chained, a heart that advances also ages well, because it ages like good wine: when good wine ages it's a fine aged wine” the Roman Pontiff noted, explaining that on the other hand “the heart that is not illuminated is like the not-so-good wine.”
“Time passes and it breaks down and becomes vinegar” he stated, praying that God would give us the “spiritual prudence to understand better where my heart is at, and to what treasure my heart is attached.”
Concluding his homily, Pope Francis prayed that the Lord give to all the strength “to unchain” our heart if it is chained, “so that it becomes free, becomes bright and give us this beautiful joy of being children of God: that true freedom.”