Pope Francis received the participants in the Plenary Assembly of the International Theological Commission on Friday at the Apostolic Palace in the Vatican.
The three main themes the Commission is addressing
throughout the course of its current five-year study period are: the
relations between monotheism and violence; the social doctrine of the
Church; and, the “sense of the faith” – which Pope Francis described in
his remarks to the participants as, “a sort of ‘spiritual instinct’,”
that makes it possible for those attuned to it to think with the Church
and to discern that, which is in conformity with the Apostolic Faith and
with the spirit of the Gospel.
Speaking of the possible
perversions of authentic faith in the one true God, Pope Francis said,
“The definitive revelation of God in Jesus Christ makes every recourse
to violence in God’s name ultimately impossible. It is precisely because
of [Christ’s] refusal of violence, because of his having overcome evil
with good, with the blood of his Cross, that Jesus has reconciled men to
God and each other.”
The Holy Father went on to say that
Christ’s peace also informs the Church’s social doctrine, which, he
said, “Aims at translating the love of God for humanity manifested in
Jesus Christ into the concrete terms of social life.”
Francis called the mission of the theologian, “At once fascinating and
risky,” because, while theological teaching and research can be a true
way toward holiness, they can also tempt theologians to dryness of
heart, pride and even ambition.
He prayed that the Blessed Virgin might
obtain for all those who live the theological life an increase in the
spirit of prayer and devotion, so that they might be true servants of
the Church in a profound spirit of humility.