Find Your Inner Iggy

Iggy’s Mission

Question 5: How do you set the world on fire?

IggyInBoat‘We Must Not Be Afraid to Set Out’

by Pope Francis

To stay close to God, we need to know how to set out; we must not be afraid to set out. I ask you: Do any of you want to be a coward, a statue in a museum, dried up and withered? Is that what you want to be? No? Are you sure? Good! I’m now going to say something I have already said many times before, but it comes from the heart.

Whenever we Christians are enclosed in our groups, our movements, our parishes, in our little worlds, we remain closed, and the same thing happens to us that happens to anything closed: when a room is closed, it begins to get dank. If a person is closed up in that room, he or she becomes ill! Whenever Christians are enclosed in their groups, parishes, and movements, they take ill. If a Christian goes to the streets, or to the outskirt, he or she may risk the same thing that can happen to anyone out there: an accident. How often have we seen accidents on the road! But I am telling you: I would prefer a thousand times over a bruised Church to an ill Church!

…But, careful! Jesus does not say, Go off and do things on your own. No! That is not what he is saying. Jesus says, Go, for I am with you! This is what is so beautiful for us; it is what guides us. If we go out to bring his Gospel with love, with a true apostolic spirit, with parrhesia, he walks with us, he goes ahead of us, and he gets there first … When we think about going far away, to an extreme outskirt, we may be a bit afraid, but in fact God is already there. Jesus is waiting for us in the hearts of our brothers and sisters, in their wounded bodies, in their hardships, in their lack of faith …

Let us remain with Christ—abiding in Christ—and let us always try to be one with him. Let us follow him; let us imitate him in his movement of love, in his going forth to meet humanity. Let us go forth and open doors. Let us have the audacity to mark out new paths for proclaiming the Gospel.

Pope Francis and Iggy (right).

Pope Francis and Iggy (right).


—Excerpted from Pope Francis’s first book, The Church of Mercy, published by Loyola Press.

8 thoughts on “Iggy’s Mission

  1. Allan

    I am praying the Ignatian Adventure and I’ve noticed overtime, without it being a deliberate act, in ticklish everyday situations where I have to respond, I’m pausing to let God in. Perhaps I can call this having a Iggy moment. Upon reflection I think life has been smoother. All the best, Allan

  2. Thomas Ignatius Stribula

    Following my 4 years in the Coast Guard I began college in Eugene Oregon on the GI Bill. While waiting to be called for a position on a local Fire Dept. I became involved in the care of my Mother who was diagnosed with Bone Cancer. I was notified that the town budget that was necessary to hire new Fire Fighters was voted down.. At the time I was spending as much of my free time as possible at the Hospital my Mother was recovering in after her leg was amputated. The Nurses got to know me and in time suggested I apply for Nursing school.. I was reluctant but eventually did . I completed the program in 1983 and for 30 years worked as an R.N. in Hospitals and in Home Care. I recently retired after 8 years with the V.A. caring for WW2, Korean and Viet Nam Veterans in their homes.

    1. Michael Moore

      What an amazing story you share of grace, Thomas! And thank you for caring for those in need, includinf our sisters and brothers in uniform. I was an AF Chaplain for 21 years active and 5 years reserve. Am now a Presbyterian pastor and Iggy fan! As well as an admirer of Pope Francis! Grace and Peace to you, my friend!

      Michael Moore

  3. Bobby Gothong

    I affirm the call of Pope Francis to go to the peripharies. It is in the peripharies where we learn the most. After our experience in typhoon Yolanda, I took a one year sabbatical leave from the family business. I decided to spend more time in the peripharies. With the marginalized, disenfranchised and neglected. I spend more time in the Philippines public school system. Majority of the Filipinos are poor. All of them are sent to a dysfunctional public school system that is marred by corruption, inefficiency and red tape. I chose 8 public school students to mentor every Sunday for 2 hours as i thought of “teaching” them what I have learned in my studies in Michigan, vancouver and Singapore. As the Sunday’s progressed. I realized I was the one learning from the public school students. I learn from them grit. Passion. Caringness. Idealism. Nationalism. Love for family. I saw honesty. I heard laughter. I felt loved. In the peripharies. We find Jesus… He is waiting for us there.

  4. Laura T.

    We must not be afraid to set out, for He is with us. He not only is with us, but with every person we meet along the journey. This is what we should keep in mind!

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