“Dear brothers and sisters, good morning!
In today’s Gospel (Lk 12:49-53), Jesus warns the disciples that the time to make a decision has come. His coming into the world, in fact, coincides with the time to make decisive choices: choosing the Gospel cannot be postponed. And to better understand His call, He uses the image of fire that He Himself came to bring to earth. Thus, He says: “I have come to set the earth on fire, and how I wish it were already blazing”…
Jesus reveals to His friends, and also to us, His most ardent desire: to bring to earth the fire of the Father’s love, which lights up life and through which, man is saved. Jesus calls us to spread this fire in the world, thanks to which, we will be recognized as His true disciples. The fire of love, lit by Christ in the world through the Holy Spirit, is a fire without limits. It is a universal fire. This has been seen since the early days of Christianity: the witness to the Gospel has spread like a beneficial fire, overcoming every division between individuals, social categories, peoples and nations. Witness to the Gospel burns. It burns every form of particularism and maintains charity open to everyone, with a preference for the poorest and the excluded.”
Read full version the translation of the address Pope Francis gave before and after praying the midday Angelus with those gathered in St. Peter’s Square, 18th Aug 2019: https://zenit.org/articles/popes-angelus-address-on-letting-jesus-fire-change-our-hearts-renew-our-lives-full-text/
A new higher committee for the implementation of the Human Fraternity document has been established to promote the ideals of tolerance and cooperation contained in the Document on Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together.
The document, signed by Pope Francis and the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar, Ahmed el-Tayyeb, was signed in Abu Dhabi during the Pope’s visit to the UAE in February. The document invites “all persons who have faith in God and faith in human fraternity to unite and work together so that it may serve as a guide for future generations to advance a culture of mutual respect in the awareness of the great divine grace that makes all human beings brothers and sisters.”
At least 150 Eritrean Christians were arrested by government officials during the last two months, with some of them held in an underground prison made up of tunnels. Eritrea’s government current clampdown on Christians began 23 June when Eritrean security officials arrested 70 members of the Faith Mission Church of Christ, in Eritrea’s second city, Keren. The church’s members, among them 35 women and 10 children, were taken to Ashufera prison, 25kms from the city.
The Faith Mission Church of Christ was the last church still open in the majority-Muslim city 90kms northwest of Asmara. It was established more than 60 years ago and once had schools and orphanages all over the country.
On 16 August, six Christians, also from Keren and who were government employees, were taken to a court in Asmara where the judge told them to renounce their faith. The six responded by saying they would “not negotiate their faith” and would “continue following Jesus,” the source said. “Reportedly, the judge angrily told them to leave while he considers the next steps. They don’t know when to expect his decision.”