During lunch with cardinals and bishops before the final Mass, Francis stressed the need to return to simplicity. He also championed the role of women: Without them, 'the Church risks becoming sterile', reports Vatican Insider.
Francis was addressing the Brazilian Church but the lunch with the region’s cardinals and bishops in Rio’s Archbishopric was much more than this. The Pope laid out a plan for his pontificate.
He presented the image of a Church which walks beside its faithful in order to be truly missionary and 'is able to make sense of the “night” contained in the flight of so many of our brothers and sisters from Jerusalem.' In order to do this, the Church must stop being 'too cold, perhaps too caught up with itself, perhaps a prisoner of its own rigid formulas, perhaps the world seems to have made the Church a relic of the past, unfit for new questions.'
It needs to learn to be simple again, warm people’s hearts and 'rediscover the maternal womb of mercy.' The Pope’s speech to Brazilian bishops marked yet another step forward in the path taken by this pontificate and was the most thorough expression of the Pope’s thoughts yet.
Francis said 'perhaps we have reduced our way of speaking about mystery to rational explanations; but for ordinary people the mystery enters through the heart.' The Church needs to make room for 'God’s mystery' so 'that it can entice people, attract them.'
FULL STORY 'We need a Church capable of warming hearts' (Vatican Insider)