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For a Christian, progress means lowering oneself: Pope

Vatican City, 21 May 2013: For a Christian, progress means lowering oneself as Jesus did, said Pope Francis at Mass on Tuesday morning at St. Marta’s Residence in the Vatican. The Pope reiterated that the real power is in service and that there should be no struggle for power in the Church. Tuesday’s mass was concelebrated by Father Andrzej Koprowski, program director of Vatican Radio, among others, and was attended by a group of employees from Vatican Radio, and also employees from the Office of pilgrims and tourists of Vatican’s Governorate.
Tuesday’s gospel offered the Pontiff an opportunity to reflect on power and service in the church. While Jesus speaks of his passion, his disciples are busy arguing about who is the greatest among them. "The struggle for power in the Church – the Pope observed - is not something of these days," but "began with Jesus." The struggle for power must not exist in the Church, pointed out the pontiff "because the real power, that the Lord "by his example has taught us," is "the power of service".
"The real power is the service. He who came not to be served but to serve, and his service was just a service of the Cross. He humbled himself unto death, even death on a cross for us, to serve us, to save us. And there is no other way in the Church to move forward. For the Christian, to go ahead, to progress means lower. If we do not learn this Christian rule, we will never be able to understand the true message of Jesus on power."
Progress, the Pope added, "it means fall", "always serve." And in the Church, he said "the greatest is the one who is at the service of others." "Such is the rule." And yet, said Pope Francis, from the beginning until now there have been "power struggles in the Church," even "in our manner of speech"
"When a person is given a second charge, in the eyes of the world he has a higher charge, they say: 'Ah, this woman has been promoted to president of that association and this man was promoted ...'. This verb, to promote: yes, it is a nice verb, you must use in the Church. Yes, he has been promoted to the Cross, he was promoted to this humiliation. That is the true advancement, what we 'looks better' to Jesus! "

The Pope then recalled St. Ignatius of Loyola, in the Spiritual Exercises he asks the Crucified Lord for "the grace of humiliation." This, the Pope reiterated, is "the true power of the service of the Church." This is the true way of Jesus, the true advancement and not those mundane.

"The way of the Lord is His service, as He made His service, we have to go after him, the way of service. That is the real power in the Church. I would like to pray for all of us today, because the Lord give us the grace to understand that the real power in the Church is the service. And also to understand the golden rule He taught us by His example: for a Christian, progressing, moving forward means lower, lower. We ask this grace."Source: VR Sedoc