Okay, what themes do you think “clamour for the attention” of the Pope? Eh? What would you like to suggest? Evangelisation? Faithfulness to liturgical norms? Encouragement of regular confession? Promotion of vocations to the priesthood? Deeper catechisation? Defense of the family, the poor and the unborn?
Well, just in case you didn’t think His Holiness was listening, have a read of this address he gave to the Bishops of Brazil, which he concluded by saying:
God willing, my dear Brothers, we will find other opportunities to explore these questions that call for our joint pastoral concern. For now, without pursuing them in an exhaustive way, I have tried to put forward the more significant themes that clamour for my attention as Pastor of the universal Church.
If you want to know what’s on the Pope’s agenda, its all here. But he can’t implement it on his own. He needs the help of the bishops–the same fundamental obedience which Christ (in whose name they carry out their ministry) gave to his Father in heaven.
And lest there should be any doubt about the fundamental purpose of the Church and her ministry: “This, and nothing else, is the purpose of the Church: the salvation of individual souls.”
I was equally impressed by his statement that:
The Church does not engage in proselytism. Instead, she grows by ‘attraction’: just as Christ ‘draws all to himself’ by the power of his love, culminating in the sacrifice of the Cross, so the Church fulfils her mission to the extent that, in union with Christ, she accomplishes every one of her works in spiritual and practical imitation of the love of her Lord.
There is much here that will give faithful Catholics joy. We know that Papa Benny is hearing the “clamour” from the sons and daughters of the Church for the Bread of Life. Let us pray that the Bishops, not only of Brazil, but of the whole world, hear our cry and the pope’s entreaty to address these themes.