Pope Francis on Transmitting the Faith

President of Pontifical Council for Social Communications shows Pope Francis news on tablet during meeting at the Vatican. (CNS photo/L'Osservatore Romano via Reuters)

Reading over Evangelii Gaudium, Pope Francis's apostolic exhortation published in November of last year, I found this paragraph to be particularly relevant to the work of Catholic educators, particularly those entrusted with teaching theology.

At the same time, today’s vast and rapid cultural changes demand that we constantly seek ways of expressing unchanging truths in a language which brings out their abiding newness. “The deposit of the faith is one thing... the way it is expressed is another”. There are times when the faithful, in listening to completely orthodox language, take away something alien to the authentic Gospel of Jesus Christ, because that language is alien to their own way of speaking to and understanding one another. With the holy intent of communicating the truth about God and humanity, we sometimes give them a false god or a human ideal which is not really Christian. In this way, we hold fast to a formulation while failing to convey its substance. This is the greatest danger. Let us never forget that “the expression of truth can take different forms. The renewal of these forms of expression becomes necessary for the sake of transmitting to the people of today the Gospel message in its unchanging meaning."

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