WelCom May 2018:
‘We begin a journey of growth in faith and in Church’s sacramental life’ – Pope Francis
At his general audience on 25 April 2018 at St Peter’s in the Vatican, Pope Francis spoke about Baptism. He said, ‘In our catechesis on the sacrament of Baptism, we have seen that it is the door by which we enter, through faith, into the mystery of Christ’s passover from death to life. Guided by the light of God’s word, and accompanied by the prayers of the saints in heaven and our brothers and sisters here on earth, we begin a journey of growth in faith and in Church’s sacramental life.
‘The Christian life remains a constant struggle, with the help of God’s grace, to renounce sin and to grow in union with the Lord. As a sign of the strength needed for this spiritual struggle, those to be baptised are first anointed with the oil of catechumens. This anointing, and the prayers of exorcism that accompany the rite, invoke the gift of the Holy Spirit, who defends us from the snares of the devil and strengthens us to persevere in our freedom as God’s adopted sons and daughters in Christ.
‘Just as ancient athletes anointed themselves with oil to prepare for their contests, so we are prepared to live fully the new life of grace, trusting in the Lord’s triumph over sin and death, sustained by the prayers of the whole Church, and awaiting the fulfilment of our hope in heaven.’