(Vatican Radio) Cardinal Bráz de Aviz, the Holy See’s Prefect of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, has challenged Religious Women in Africa to be wary of the idolatry of money which he said is very real.
The Cardinal was speaking during his homily when he celebrated the opening Mass for more than 150 religious women-leaders attending the 17th Plenary Assembly of the Association of Consecrated Women in Eastern and Central Africa (ACWECA) in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania.
“Money commands everything today, money commands power, money creates the poor, money creates death, it creates arms, and it creates fear. We do not want to serve money, we want to serve God and put money at the service of God and our brothers and sisters,” said Cardinal Bráz de Aviz.
He said it is unfortunate that some consecrated persons seemed to place more trust in bank accounts than in God, a scenario that has often caused friction between Bishops and the Religious.
“How often do Bishops and Religious fight over money issues? Is it not true? That is how it is; we know it because we receive news of these fights; we, therefore, have to change,” he recommended.
The Cardinal advised the Religious women to cultivate a listening spirit and to learn first before they can teach. By so doing, he said that they would be communicating what is from the heart.
The Cardinal also reminded the consecrated women that they had received everything freely from God and as a sign of gratitude they should thank him for his abundant blessings. He explained that God gave his only begotten Son as a sacrifice for the love of humanity and he called on the Religious to lives of gratitude by doing the will of the Lord.
He further encouraged the ACWECA representatives to follow the teachings of the Holy Father Pope Francis who always tells Cardinals to come out of their palaces and go to the people; stay with the people; look for those suffering and be close to them. Cardinal Bráz de Aviz testified that living the teachings of Pope Francis has considerably helped him begin a new conversion.
(Pamela Adinda, AMECEA Online News)