(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Friday greeted members of the Congregation of Don Orione, the Sons of Divine Providence, on the occasion of their 14th General Chapter.
The Congregation takes its inspiration from its founder, St Luigi Orione, whose motto was: “Do good to all; harm no one.” St Luigi Orione is remembered for his commitment to social justice and the service of those in need, a service guided and inspired by the teachings of the Catholic Church.
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In his address to the General Chapter, Pope Francis said, “The whole Church is called to journey with Jesus along the paths of the world, to encounter the humanity of today, which needs, as Don Orione wrote, ‘the bread of the body, and the divine balm of the Faith’.”
To put these words into practice today, the Pope said, the members of the Congregation must keep in mind their identity as “servants of Christ and of the poor.”
“You were called and consecrated by God,” he said, “to remain with Jesus and to serve Him in the poor and in those excluded from society." He called them to vigilance, that their faith “might not become an ideology,” or their charity a mere “philanthropy.”
Pope Francis recalled that, even during the lifetime of Don Orione, the Orionine Fathers were known as “running priests” because they “seemed to be always on the go, in the midst of the people, with the rapid pace of those who care.”
He exhorted them, “with Don Orione, to to not remain enclosed within your particular environment, but to ‘go out’.”
At the same time, it is important to never “lose sight of the Church” or of their own religious community. Rather, he said, “your heart must be there in your ‘cenaculum’, but then needs to go out to bring the mercy of God to all, without distinction.”