Politics should be “neither servant nor master, but a friend and collaborator”. It should neither be “fearful or reckless, but responsible and courageous and prudent”. It should not leave certain categories on the sidelines, nor plunder or pollute natural resources. Politics are to harmonize the legitimate aspirations of individuals and groups by keeping the helm firmly focused on the interests of the entire citizenship.”
Pope Francis began his visit to central Italy, first in Cesena, he will later move to Bologna, in Piazza del Popolo, – People’s square – a name and a symbol of a meeting place that recalls the common good, a place where– the Pope says – “the common good is kneaded”. The Pontiff invites politicians to apologize when they make mistakes, then to move on, to keep “going forward”.
The Pontiff invites politicians to apologize when they make mistakes, and then to “go forward”. He then called corruption “woodworm” and stated that the good politician is also a “martyr”, who agrees to abandon their ideas in order to be “at service”. Finally, Francis once again reiterated his appeal to strengthen dialogue between young and old generations.
Today October 1,2017, the Pontiff is in Cesena and Bologna, for the third centenary of Pope Pius VI’s birth and for the conclusion of the diocesan Eucharistic Congress. On his arrival at the heliport, near the Hippodrome of Cesena, the Pope was greeted, among others, by Monsignor Douglas Regattieri, Bishop of Cesena-Sarsina. Immediately after, the Holy Father was transferred by car to Piazza del Popolo, where he met the citizens.
The Pontiff said to be, “happy to start my visit is Cesena, in such a significant place for the civil and social life of your city. A city – he recalls – rich in civilization and history, which among its illustrious children there are also two Popes: Pius VI, whose third centenary of birth we shall remember today, and Pius VII “.
For centuries, “this square has been the meeting point for citizens and the area where the market takes place. It deserves its name: Piazza del Popolo, or simply “la Piazza”, a public space in which important decisions are made for the city in its Palazzo Comunale [town-council] and economic and social initiatives are launched”.
An “emblematic place, where the aspirations of each individual are confronted with the needs, expectations and dreams of the entire citizenship; where particular groups become aware that their desires must be harmonized with those of the community; where it is learned that, without pursuing the common good with constancy, commitment and intelligence, not even individuals will be able to take advantage of their rights and realize their noblest aspirations, because the public and civil space in which to live and work has become less”. This is the place where “the common good is kneaded, where one works for the common good”.
The centrality of the square “therefore sends the message that it is essential to work together for the common good. This is the basis of good city-governance,which can make a city beautiful, healthy and welcoming, a crossroads of initiatives and a driving force for sustainable and integral development “.
And Piazza del Popolo, “like all the other squares in Italy, recalls the need for “good politics” for the life of the community; “good politics”, and not that one enslaved by individual ambitions or by the arrogance of factions or centers of interest – the Pope emphasizes – but politics that are “neither servant nor master, but a friend and collaborator”.
It should neither be “fearful or reckless, but responsible and courageous and prudent”; that makes people’s involvement, their progressive inclusion and participation grow”; and “that does not leave certain categories on the sidelines, that does not plunder and pollute natural resources – as they are not a bottomless well but a treasure donated to us by God for us to use with respect and intelligence. We need politics able to harmonize the legitimate aspirations of individuals and groups by keeping a firm focus on the interests of the entire citizenship.”
This is “the true face of politics and its raison d’ être: a priceless service to the good of the whole community. And this is why the Church’s social doctrine considers it a noble form of charity”.
Francis exhorts the young and older generation “to prepare themselves adequately and engage personally in this field, assuming from the beginning a perspective towards the common good and rejecting even the slightest form of corruption”.
THE GREATEST MAN WHO EVER LIVED
- He was born in an obscure village, the child of a peasant woman.
- He grew up in another village, where He worked in a carpenter shop until He was thirty.
- Then for three years He was an itinerant preacher.
- He never wrote a book.
- He never held an office.
- He never had a family or a home.
- He didn’t go to college.
- He never visited a big city.
- He never travelled two hundred miles from the place where He was born.
- He did none of the things that usually accompany greatness.
- He had no credentials but Himself.
- He was only thirty-three when the tide of public opinion turned against Him.
- His friends ran away.
- One of them denied Him.
- He was turned over to His enemies and went through the mockery of a trial.
- He was nailed to a cross between two thieves.
- While He was dying, His executioners gambled for His garments, the only property He had on earth.
- When He was dead, He was laid in a borrowed grave through the pity of a friend.
- Nineteen centuries have come and gone, and today He is the central figure of the human race.
- All the armies that ever marched, all the navies that ever sailed, all the parliaments that ever sat, all the kings that ever reigned, put together, have not effected the life of man on this earth as much as that One Solitary Life.
Then again unscripted the Pope said , “Corruption is the worm – that corrodes – political vocation, it does not allow civilization to grow and, the good politician also have their own cross when they wants to be good because they often must set aside their personal ideas to take up somebody else’s initiatives and harmonize them, unite them so that they are common good. In this sense, the good politician feels as if he or she were a martyr, let’s say, “at service” because they set aside their own ideas, but put them at the service to go towards the common good”.
At this point, the Pontiff exhorts, as he has done many times before, a greater dialogue between generations, in particular between young and old people because “the elderly people, with their wisdom, can correct the politician who gets of track, by pointing them out the right path. Today it is not only the time of young people, but it is the time for young people and the elderly together. It is time “of the youth-elderly dialogue. Please, take this road!. Even, and especially, in politics.”
Have you ever wondered what happened to the 56 men
who signed the Declaration of Independence?
Five signers were captured by the British as traitors and tortured before they died.
Twelve had their homes ransacked and burned.
Two lost their sons serving in the Revolutionary Army;
another had two sons captured.
Nine of the 56 fought and died from wounds or hardships of the Revolutionary War.
They signed and they pledged their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor.
What kind of men were they?
Twenty-four were lawyers and jurists.
Eleven were merchants,
nine were farmers and large plantation owners;
men of means, well educated,
but they signed the Declaration of Independence knowing full well that the penalty would be death if they were captured.
Carter Braxton of Virginia, a wealthy planter and trader, saw his ships swept from the seas by the British Navy. He sold his home and properties to pay his debts, and died in rags.
Thomas McKeam was so hounded by the British that he was forced to move his family almost constantly. He served in the Congress without pay, and his family was kept in hiding. His possessions were taken from him and poverty was his reward.
Vandals or soldiers looted the properties of Dillery, Hall, Clymer, Walton, Gwinnett, Heyward, Ruttledge, and Middleton.
At the battle of Yorktown, Thomas Nelson, Jr., noted that the British General Cornwallis had taken over the Nelson home for his headquarters. He quietly urged General George Washington to open fire. The home was destroyed and Nelson died bankrupt.
Francis Lewis had his home and properties destroyed. The enemy jailed his wife, and she died within a few months.
John Hart was driven from his wife’s bedside as she was dying. Their 13 children fled for their lives. His fields and his gristmill were laid to waste. For more than a year he lived in forests and caves, returning home to find his wife dead and his children vanished.
The Bishop of Rome then encouraged “to ask the protagonists of public life, to be coherent, to commit, to be prepared and have moral righteousness, capacity for initiative, forbearance, patience and strength of mind in facing today’s challenges, without, however, demanding an impossible perfection”.
“Human and historical events and the complexity of the problems do not allow us to solve everything right away. Healthy realism knows that even the best ruling class cannot suddenly solve all the issues. To realize this, would be enough to try to act firsthand instead of just observe and criticize the work of others from the balcony “.
In this way, we will find the strength to take on our due responsibilities, and at the same time understand that, despite God’s help and People’ collaboration, we are bound to make mistakes “. And when it happens, that a politician is wrong, he or she is to apologize – the Pope exclaims without reading the written text – and then keep going forward”.
“Like all of the Romagna area, Cesena “has traditionally been a politically passionate land”, he recalls; here, “I would like to say to you, and to everyone: rediscover, today as well, the essential dimension’s value of civil coexistence and give your own contribution, and be ready to make the common good prevail over that of a single part; be ready to recognize that every idea must be verified and reshaped in comparison with reality; ready to recognize that it is fundamental to start initiatives.
Francis emphasizes, “Be demanding with yourself and with others, bearing in mind that conscientious commitment, preceded by adequate preparation, will yield fruit and make people’s good and even happiness grow”.
“In recent years Politics has seemed to retreat to the aggressiveness and pervasiveness of other forms of power – he observed – such as financial and media power. It is necessary to revive the rights of good policy, its specific suitability to serve the public good, to act in a way that reduces inequalities, to promote the good of families with concrete measures, to provide a solid framework of rights and duties and to make them effective for all “.
Finally, the Pontiff asked to pray “the Lord so that he may inspire good politicians who truly care about society, the people and the good of the poor”.
Before leaving Piazza del Popolo, Francis addressed a heartfelt thought to “those who are suffering”, then stepped down from the stage and went greeting the sick people present.
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