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The Evangelical Pope | Today's World Challenge: Faithful to One's Roots
Living Words from John Paul II
Edited by Abraham A. van Kempen
Published Sunday, October 18, 2020
Each week we let Saint Pope John Paul II share meaningful signposts to spark socio-economic resolves through justice and righteousness combined with mercy and compassion; in short, love.
"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever."
__ Hebrew 13:8
Krakow Airport, Poland, 10 July 1997 | The words of the Letter to the Hebrews 13: 8 have been the constant theme of this visit to my homeland.
Fidelity [faithfulness] to roots does not mean a mechanical copying of past patterns.
Fidelity to roots is always creative, ready to descend into the depths, open to new challenges, and alert to the "signs of the times."
It also expresses a concern for developing our native culture, in which the Christian element has existed since the beginning.
Fidelity to roots means the ability to create an organic synthesis of perennial values, confirmed so often in history and the challenge of today's world, faith, culture, the Gospel, and life.
My wish for my fellow citizens and Poland is that she will be able, in this precise way, to be faithful to herself and to the roots from which she has grown.
A Poland faithful to her roots. A Europe faithful to its roots. In this context, historic importance attaches to the fact that the Presidents of the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Slovakia, Lithuania, Ukraine, and Poland have participated in the celebrations for Saint Adalbert. I am most grateful to them.
As I leave you, I pray that this seed will bear abundant fruit by the will of the Lord of the harvest.
Moments of farewell are always difficult. I take my leave of you, my beloved countrymen, with a profound awareness that this farewell does not signify breaking the bond that unites me with you - which connects me to my dear native land.
As I return to the Vatican, I carry all of you, your joys, and your cares. I take my whole native land. I would like you to remember that Poland occupies a particular place in the "geography of the Pope's prayer" for the universal Church and the entire world.
At the same time, following the example of the Apostle Saint Paul, I ask you to make room for me in your hearts (2 Corinthians 6:11-13) and your prayers that I may be able to serve the Church of God.
7-8 Appreciate your pastoral leaders who gave you the Word of God. Take a good look at how they live, and let their faithfulness instruct you and their truthfulness. There should be a consistency that runs through us all. For Jesus doesn't change—yesterday, today, tomorrow, he's always himself.
9 Don't be lured away from him by the latest speculations about him. The grace of Christ is the only good ground for life. Products named after Christ don't seem to do much for those who buy them. (Hebrews 13:7-9 (The Message Translation)
APOSTOLIC JOURNEY OF HIS HOLINESS JOHN PAUL II TO POLAND (MAY 31-JUNE 10, 1997)
ADDRESS OF JOHN PAUL II AT HIS DEPARTURE FROM POLAND, Krakow Airport - 10 June 1997
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