Vatican City, 11 October 2014 (VIS) – This morning in St. Peter's Basilica, a Holy Mass was celebrated to give thanks for the canonisation of the Canadian saints Francois de Laval and Marie de l'Incarnation. In his homily, the Holy Father spoke about missionaries who, like the new saints, “in docility to the Holy Spirit, have the courage to live the Gospel”.
“Missionaries have received this call: they have gone out to call everyone, in the highways and byways of the world”, he continued. “In this way they have done immense good for the Church, for once the Church stops moving, once she becomes closed in on herself, she falls ill, she can be corrupted, whether by sins or by that false knowledge cut off from God which is worldly secularism. Missionaries have turned their gaze to Christ crucified … they have been able to live in poverty and abundance, in plenty and hunger”.
The Pope gave two pieces of advice to Canadian pilgrims. “Remember your leaders, those who spoke the word of God to you; consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith”, and “Recall those earlier days when, after you had been enlightened, you endured a hard struggle with sufferings. Do not abandon that confidence of yours; it brings a great reward. You need only endurance”.
Pope Francis concluded by mentioning the many Canadian missionaries, so that “this memory does not lead us to abandon frankness and courage”. He added, “the devil is envious and cannot tolerate that a land can be so rich in missionaries”, and asked for prayers for Quebec, so that it may “return to the path of fruitfulness, to give many missionaries to the world” and so that the new Canadian saints “may help us as intercessors”.