Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Pope Francis: the inauguration homily

.... was absolutely gorgeous! There is a mastery of turn of phrase in the homily that I used to enjoy so much in the homilies of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. And, to my relief, the homily was delivered according to the prepared text and without ad libs.

Here it is in English, and here in Italian. There several points where the original Italian draws attention to a subtle emphasis or nuance that is not at first obvious in the English translation.

The video of the entire celebration is on Youtube, and listening to the homily in Italian with the English translation to hand is moving and highlights the subtle emphases and nuances just referred to.

One sentence has a particular practical reference for one of my own activities, hospital visiting:
It means caring for one another in our families: husbands and wives first protect one another, and then, as parents, they care for their children, and children themselves, in time, protect their parents.
I quite often see situations where grown up children have taken on the care of their parents during an illness, and share with them exactly this thought about the change over of the caring role with time. The reference to husbands and wives first protecting one another also appears to be an expression that is rich in pastoral implication, and could provide a hermeneutical key to the well known passage in St Paul's Letter to the Ephesians.
To protect Jesus with Mary, to protect the whole of creation, to protect each person, especially the poorest, to protect ourselves: this is a service that the Bishop of Rome is called to carry out, yet one to which all of us are called, so that the star of hope will shine brightly. Let us protect with love all that God has given us!

No comments: