• June 12, 2013

What “Home” in Heart’s Home means
in Pope Francis’ words

Pope Francis’ address at the “Casa Dono di Maria” of the Missionaries of Charity per­fectly describes what a Heart’s Home house has always been meant to be:

This building is a “home”. And when we say “home” we mean a place of hos­pi­tality, a dwelling, a pleasant human envi­ron­ment where one stays readily, finds one­self, feels inserted into a ter­ri­tory, in a com­mu­nity. Yet more pro­foundly, “home” is a word with a typ­i­cally familiar flavor, which recalls warmth, affec­tion, the love that can be felt in a family. Hence the “home” rep­re­sents the most pre­cious human trea­sures, that of encounter, that of rela­tions among people, dif­ferent in age, cul­ture and his­tory, but who live together and together help one another to grow. For this reason, the “home” is a cru­cial place in life, where life grows and can be ful­filled, because it is a place in which every person learns to receive love and to give love.

This Home gives hos­pi­tality to you, dear guests, who have come from dif­ferent parts of the world; but you are also a gift for this Home and for the Church. You tell us that to love God and neighbor is not some­thing abstract, but pro­foundly con­crete: it means seeing in every person the face of the Lord to be served, to serve him con­cretely.

Open hos­pi­tality is lived here, without dis­tinc­tions of nation­ality or reli­gion, according to the teaching of Jesus: “You received without pay, give without pay” (Mt 10:8). We must recover the whole sense of gift, of gra­tu­itous­ness, of sol­i­darity. Rampant cap­i­talism has taught the logic of profit at all costs, of giving to get, of exploita­tion without looking at the person… and we see the results in the crisis we are expe­ri­encing! This Home is a place that teaches charity, a “school” of charity, which instructs me to go encounter every person, not for profit, but for love. The music — let us call it — of this Home is love. And this is beau­tiful!

There is one last char­ac­ter­istic of this Home: it qual­i­fies itself as a gift “of Mary”. The Holy Virgin made of her exis­tence an unceasing and beau­tiful gift to God, because she loved the Lord. Mary’s example is an incen­tive to those who live in this Home, and for all of us, to live in charity for our neighbor not out of some sort of social duty, but begin­ning from the love of God, from the charity of God.

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