this pressed: The Church is about Christ – not an NGO, Pope tells Swiss bishops :: Catholic News Agency (CNA)

Pope Francis celebrates Mass for the Feast of Pentecost in St. Peter’s Basilica on June 8, 2014. Credit: Daniel Ibáñez/CNA.

Vatican City, Dec 2, 2014 / 03:30 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- In an address to the Swiss bishops on Monday, Pope Francis urged them maintain a lively faith, lest their country’s religious buildings become nothing more than dust-filled museums.

The Holy Father also used the opportunity to encourage the bishops to live their episcopal fatherhood; to uphold the ministerial priesthood; to engage in frank ecumenism; and to maintain the Church’s witness to the Gospel.

“Your country has a long Christian tradition,” he said in a text delivered to the bishops of Switzerland Dec. 1 at the Vatican, adding, “you have a great and beautiful responsibility to maintain a living faith in your land.”

“Without a living faith in the risen Christ, your beautiful churches and monasteries will gradually become museums; all the commendable works and institutions will lose their soul, leaving behind only empty spaces and abandoned people.”

He continued, “the mission that has been entrusted to you is to nurture your flock, proceeding in accordance with current circumstances … the People of God cannot exist without their pastors, bishops and priests; the Lord has given the Church the gift of the apostolic succession in the service of the unity of faith and its full transmission.”

Through this complete transmission, Pope Francis said, the Swiss, especially the youth, “can more easily find reasons to believe and to hope.”

via The Church is about Christ – not an NGO, Pope tells Swiss bishops :: Catholic News Agency (CNA).

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