Paul VI Audience Hall
Wednesday, 6 August 2014
Dear Brothers and Sisters: In today’s Audience we resume our catechesis on the Church, the People of God. Prepared for in the Old Testament and established by Christ in the fullness of time, the Church is a new people, founded on a new covenant. The newness brought by Christ does not set aside what went before, but brings it to completion. In the Scriptures, Saint John the Baptist is a bridge between the prophecies and promises of the Old Testament and their fulfilment in the New. John points to Jesus and calls us to follow him in repentance and conversion. The new law which Jesus gives in the Sermon on the Mount perfects the law given to Moses on Mount Sinai. In the Beatitudes, Jesus shows us the way in which, with his grace, we can attain authentic happiness. He tells us, in the Gospel of Matthew, that our Christian life will be judged on how we treat him in the least of our brethren. At the heart of the new covenant is our realization that, in Christ, we are embraced by God’s mercy and compassion, and that our lives must bear witness to his love for all our brothers and sisters.