HOW TO REACH HEAVEN?

ANGELUS ADDRESS BY POPE FRANCIS 10/05/2020

In today’s Gospel (cf. Jn 14 : 1-12) we listen to the beginning of the so-called “farewell discourse” of Jesus. These are the words he addressed to the disciples at the end of the Last Supper, just before facing the Passion. At such a dramatic moment, Jesus began by saying: “Do not let your heart be troubled” (v. 1). He says it to us too, in the dramas of life. But how can we keep the heart from being upset? Because the heart is troubled.

The Lord indicates two remedies for disturbance. The first is: “Have faith in me” (v. 1). It would seem a bit theoretical, abstract advice. Instead, Jesus wants to tell us a specific thing. He knows that, in life, the worst anxiety, the disturbance, arises from the feeling of not making it, from feeling alone and without points of reference in the face of what happens. This anguish, in which difficulty is added to difficulty, cannot be overcome alone. We need the help of Jesus, and for this Jesus asks to have faith in him, that is, not to lean on ourselves, but on Him. Because the liberation from the disturbance passes through the entrusting. Trust in Jesus, make the “leap”. And this is the release from the disturbance. And Jesus is risen and alive just to be always by our side. Then we can say to him: “Jesus, I believe you are risen and that you are beside me. I believe you listen to me. I bring you what troubles me, my worries: I have faith in You and I entrust myself to You ”.

Then there is a second remedy for the disturbance, which Jesus expresses in these words: «In the house of my Father there are many dwellings. […] I am going to prepare a place for you ”(v. 2). Here is what Jesus did for us: he booked us a place in Heaven. He took our humanity upon himself to carry it beyond death, to a new place, to Heaven, so that where He is we too. It is the certainty that consoles us: there is a place reserved for each one. There is a place for me too. Each of us can say: there is a place for me. We do not live aimlessly and without destination. We are expected, we are precious. God is in love with us, we are his children. And for us he has prepared the most worthy and beautiful place: Heaven. Let’s not forget: the dwelling that awaits us is Heaven. Here we are passing. We are made for Heaven, for eternal life, to live forever. Forever: it is something that we cannot even imagine now. But it is even more beautiful to think than this forever will be all in joy, in full communion with God and with others, without more tears, without grudges, without divisions and disturbance.

But how to reach Heaven? What is the way? Here is the decisive phrase of Jesus. Today he says: “I am the way” (v. 6). To go up to Heaven the way is Jesus: it is to have a living relationship with him, to imitate him in love, and to follow his steps. And I, Christian, you, Christian, each of us Christians, can ask ourselves: “Which way do I follow?” There are ways that do not lead to Heaven: the ways of worldliness, the ways of self-affirmation, the ways of selfish power. And there is the way of Jesus, the way of humble love, of prayer, of meekness, of trust, of service to others. It is not the way of my protagonism , it is the way of Jesus protagonist of my life. It is going on every day asking him: “Jesus, what do you think of my choice? What would you do in this situation with these people? ” It will do us good to ask Jesus, who is the way, for directions to Heaven. May Our Lady, Queen of Heaven, help us to follow Jesus, who opened Heaven for us.