Pope to Canada's Jesuits: 'Miracles can happen when Church is united'

Pope Francis' conversation with Canada's Jesuits is published by Jesuit review's La Civilta Cattolica, during which the Pope highlighted the power of synodality, concern for Haiti, and the Church's love and concern for families.

Aug 04, 2022

Pope Francis with members of the Society of Jesus in Canada (Vatican Media)

By Deborah Castellano Lubov
In Québec, Pope Francis met with his Jesuit confreres ministering in Canada for a private moment of conversation.

On Thursday, the Jesuit review La Civilta Cattolica published the exchange between the Jesuit Pope and his fellow Jesuits which took place in the Archbishop's Residence in Québec City on the last day of the Pope's penitential pilgrimage to Canada.

The Holy Father normally reserves a private moment to meet with his Jesuit brothers during his Apostolic Journeys, and responds to questions in an informal conversation with those gathered.

In the conversation, the main themes which emerged were synodality, great concern for Haiti, love for family and the liturgy.

"Synod," Pope Francis said, does not refer to "a political meeting," nor "a committee for parliamentary decisions."

Rather, he underscored, "It is the expression of the Church where the protagonist is the Holy Spirit, as in the facts narrated in the Acts of the Apostles."

Synod, he continued, means walking together, precisely what had been the theme of his Apostolic Visit, during which he applauded, "the unity of the Church emerged."

“If you want to go quickly, go alone, but if you want to go safely, go accompanied.”

A united Church can work miracles
The Pope continued reflecting on the power of effective synodality.

The Holy Father acknowledged that the process of reconciliation with the indigenous peoples is not complete, but observed that "the most important thing is that the episcopate agreed, took up the challenge, and moved forward." He called what he observed in Canada, "an example of a united episcopate."

"When an episcopate is united," the Pope stressed, "it can deal well with the challenges that arise."

"If this journey of reconciliation is going well," Pope Francis clarified, 'it is not because of my visit. I am just the icing on the cake, it is [because of ] the bishops who have done everything with their unity."

The Holy Father applauded how the indigenous peoples managed the entire situation and the fruitful relationship between them and the bishops.

“These are the miracles that can be performed when the Church is united.”

Concern for Haiti
"It does not seem to me that the international organisations know what to do," the Pope reflected.

“Haiti is living a Calvary.”

"It does not seem to me that the international organisations know what to do," the Pope reflected.

He called for concrete solutions to get out of the crisis, and to help "the people of Haiti grow in hope," suggested faithful take initiatives of prayer and penance.

Closeness to families
The conversation also touched on the Church's concern and love for families, and the Pope lamented how despite the richness of the text of the post-synodal Apostolic Exhortation on the family, that some focus on one note, rather than pay attention to how the Church treasures and wishes to help families.

During the Pope's Apostolic Journey, he repeatedly asked forgiveness for the wrongdoings committed, and has called for researching how these tragedies occurred so that they may never happen again.

After his meeting with the Jesuits and a subsequent meeting with indigenous, the Pope concluded his time in Québec and boarded the papal plane en route to the Arctic city of Iqaluit, in Nunavut Territory, for a few hours, where met Inuit survivors of residential schools, and young people and elderly, before taking his return flight to Rome.--Vatican News

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