June 24, 2013

Pope Francis said his fellow Jesuits can help heal the rift between the Gospel and today’s cultures.

“This ministry is typical of the mission of the Society of Jesus,” he said, urging the editors and staff of a Jesuit journal to continue offering the world “your reflections and your in-depth analyses” of cultural and social trends and transformations, including hot button topics.

The pope met June 14 with the editors and staff of La Civilta Cattolica, a Jesuit-run magazine founded by Pope Pius IX in 1850.

The mission of La Civilta Cattolica, he said, is to be a voice in the wider cultural debates of the day and “to propose, in a way that is serious and accessible, a vision that’s based on the Christian faith.”

“The split between the Gospel and culture is without a doubt the drama of our time,” he said, citing Pope Paul VI’s 1975 apostolic exhortation Evangelii Nuntiandi.

“You are called to make your contribution to heal this rift, which even passes through each of your hearts and those of your readers,” he said.

Dialogue calls for letting down one’s guard, opening up to others, believing others have something good to contribute and giving room to others’ opinions and points of view, “obviously without falling into relativism.”