After finishing his catecheses on the Holy Eucharist and then the Sacrament of Baptism, the Holy Father began a catechesis on Confirmation today during his general weekly audience in St. Peter’s Square at Vatican City.
The discussion is so timely, says Ashley Noronha, Relevant Radio Rome Correspondent, “since we just celebrated the feast of Pentecost on Sunday. And the Holy Father pointed out how Pentecost confirms the grace of our Baptism. That’s what the Sacrament of Confirmation does as well—it anoints us with the Holy Spirit and then solidifies, strengthens our mission to go out and to preach the Good News to the ends of the earth. That Sacrament of Confirmation makes each of us gospels to the Holy Spirit and helps us to live out our baptismal promises.”
Pope Francis asked the faithful to strive to be the right amount of salt and light for the earth, saying, “Both too much and too little salt make food unappetizing, just like too much or too little light hinder sight.”
“In the moment of the anointing, the bishop says this: ‘Receive the Holy Spirit that has been given to you as a gift.’ It’s God’s great gift, the Holy Spirit. And we all have the Holy Spirit inside, the Spirit is in our heart and soul and guides us in life so we’re the right amount of salt and light for mankind,” said the pope.
Pope Francis’ General Audience, May 23, 2018
Dear brothers and sisters: In these days following the Church’s celebration of the gift of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, our catechesis turns to the sacrament of Confirmation, which “confirms” the grace of our Baptism and “anoints” us with the Spirit to bear witness to Christ before the world. Jesus himself, filled with the Holy Spirit, carried out his mission as the Lord’s Anointed, and after his death and resurrection, bestowed the Spirit upon his disciples, who went forth from the Upper Room to proclaim God’s mighty works (cf. Acts 2:11). As Christ was anointed by the Spirit at his baptism in the Jordan, so at Pentecost the Church received the Spirit in order to carry out her mission of preaching the Gospel to the ends of the earth. In Confirmation, Jesus fills us with his Spirit and makes us sharers in his own life and mission, in accordance with the Father’s saving plan. May this sacrament strengthen us to be ever docile to the promptings of the Holy Spirit, as we strive in all our actions and words to live fully the new life received in Baptism and to advance the Church’s mission in the world.