Catholic - Pope Francis      

 09.10.13   General Audience   Catechesis dedicated to the Creed  “one, holy, catholic”. 

The Church is like a great orchestra; it is “the orchestra of God”. In God's orchestra, each member - by expressing his particular characteristics and uniqueness - has a vital role to play in giving life to a harmonious symphony whose conductor is the Holy Spirit.

The term 'catholic' derives “from the Greek 'kath' olon' which means 'according to the whole', or the 'totality'”. The Church is Catholic, because "she is the space, the home in which the faith is preached whole and entire, and in which the salvation brought to us by Christ is offered to all”.

Regarding the Church's universality, that the word helps us to understand that the Church is a home open to “all peoples”. Yet it is also means that she is present in all of her universality even in her smallest parts, such as a parish church.

Regarding her unity, that unity is to be understood in a way that includes the diversity of her single members. Indeed, her wealth is to be found precisely in her diversity. “This is what is beautiful about the Church: each one brings his own gift - which God has given him – in order to enrich others”. This is why “when there's gossip, there is no harmony, but only conflict. And this is not the Church. The Church is the harmony of everyone. Never gossip about one another, never argue”.

Therefore, let us accept the others, “let us accept that there is a proper variety,” because uniformity kills life. The life of the Church is variety, and when we want to impose this uniformity on everyone we kill the gifts of the Holy Spirit. It is therefore necessary to keep alive this diversity which so enriches the Church.