FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL
ON POPE FRANCIS
January 29, 2014
Pope Francis says that ALL Christians should be open to spontaneous, joyful, exultant prayer–the “prayer of praise,” what we know as charismatic prayer and worship. This is not just for those in charismatic renewal, but for all.
“Charismatic” prayer and worship is the fruit of Pentecost, and Pentecost is all about empowerment for worldwide mission. If we are to be effective evangelizers and empowered witnesses, we must have the spirit of Pentecost, and that includes charismatic spirituality.
The New Evangelization includes a re-discovery of what Pentecost means. This includes not just charismatic prayer, but also baptism in the Spirit and charismatic gifts, including glossolalia. Most in the Church know about the sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation, but not about the adult experience of baptism in the Spirit. Those in the Church know spiritual gifts to be the 7 gifts (as listed in Isaiah 11:2-3a), but do not know the spiritual gifts that are associated with Pentecost (the main list are the 9 gifts in 1 Corinthians 12:8-10). Catholics know memorized prayers but are not into spontaneous prayer.
Is it any wonder that many Catholics are weak and nominal in their faith? Has not the Church become more of an institution rather than a powerful movement of the Holy Spirit? All this can be related to a lack of appreciation for what Pentecost truly is, according to God’s intent. Pentecost needs to be re-discovered.
Not only should all Christians be open to the prayer of praise, but all Catholics, if they are to participate fruitfully in the New Evangelization, should be open to the fullness of the experience of Pentecost. This is the way God intended massive worldwide evangelization to be accomplished.
Pope: be open to exultant ‘prayer of praise’
All Christians should be open to spontaneous, joyful, exultant prayer—the “prayer of praise”—Pope Francis said in his homily at a Mass on January 28.
Reflecting on the day’s reading from the Second Book of Samuel, which recounting the story of King David dancing before the Lord, the Pope said that such joyful manifestations should not be considered appropriate only for “the Renewal in Spirit folks.” On the contrary, he insisted, “prayer of praise is a Christian prayer.”
The Pope cautioned the faithful not to be like Michael, Saul’s daughter, who despised King David for his display. “Well, you’re able to shout when your team scores a goal, and you are not able to sing praises to the Lord?” the Pope said.
Additional sources for this story
Some links will take you to other sites, in a new window.
* * *