When Pope Francis first appeared on the Balcony at St.Peters after he was voted in as our new Pope, his countenance, simplicity, and profound spirituality was written all over his face. His appearance captured the world; His humanity comes to the surface in his down-to-earth, off the cuff comments, touching the hearts of all people. His phone call to the Newsagent in Buenos Ares, cancelling his daily Newspaper, is indicative that the ‘poor of the Lord’ are foremost in his heart.
Deciding not to wear a new Papal Pectoral Cross, and remaining with his well worn Cross, speaks volumes about the man. This striking witness to simplicity which is at the heart of the Gospel, is the greatest reminder to all of us, to refocus on the hearts of people, and not on the material, opulent outpourings as manifested in some quarters of the Church.
The decision of Pope Francis to experiment in living with others in St.Martha’s Vatican Guesthouse, indicates that his position in the Church does not evict him to live in isolation. His persona invites people to be close to him, and to feel needed in his eyes. The warmth in his writings and Talks, demonstrates that he is not an ecclesiastical, antiseptic Prelate! On the contrary; to all of us entrusted with servant leadership in God’s household; and that means all the Baptised, the Jug of water, Bowl and Towel of Holy Thursday, remind us that we are all called to be the Lord’s Foot washers.