Crisis gives reason to reflect on human existence, says Spanish archbishop

.- Archbishop Braulio Rodriguez of Toledo, Spain recently spoke of the impact a crisis can have on humanity.

“The crisis can and should be an incentive to reflect on human existence and the importance of its ethical dimension,” the archbishop said during a Jan. 23 Mass honoring St. Ildefonso, the patron of Toledo.

Orthodox Archbishop Policarpo Stravropoulos of Spain and Portugal also attended the Mass.

“When we recite the prayer for peace, we confidently pray that those who are suffering hunger, tribulation or illness, those who are going through difficulties or are burdened with debt or sadness, be liberated by the generous mercy of the Lord,” said Archbishop Rodriguez. He added that the prayer for peace is beautiful for the “complex” times in which we live because we can be “gripped by fear.”

“Christians cannot fall into this fear. Yes, the present moment is characterized unfortunately by a deep uneasiness and by various crises in economic, political and social life,” and that this is affecting not only families but also companies in the most economically advanced countries.

“It also affects the developing countries as well,” he added.

“We should not be discouraged—the Holy Father said in his discourse to diplomats on Jan. 9—but rather begin our journey again with determination, with new forms of commitment. The crisis can and should be an incentive to reflect on human existence and on the importance of its ethical dimension,” the archbishop said.

“St. Ildelfonso must intercede for us before Jesus Christ so that we can trust in the help of our faith and in the possibilities that are always opening before us, if we are open to the Gospel and to its liberating force, if we proclaim Christ and his Gospel to those who do not know it and if we deepen in the grace of our Christian initiation,” he explained.

“Perhaps we have thought or still think that only the things around us can save us and give us happiness.  Is that so? Isn’t there more, brothers and sisters? We know we need temporal things but without forgetting those that are eternal,” the archbishop said.

“We wish the economy was better, but is this not a chance to open our hearts in ways that do not draw us away from God and from love of neighbor, from the common good, justice and the healthy and good things that life has to offer?” he asked.

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