By Christopher Wells, Vatican News, Sunday 25 August.
At the Angelus on Sunday, Pope Francis reflected on the day’s Gospel reading, in which Jesus is asked, “Lord, will only a few people be saved?” In Jesus’ time, this was a much debated point. “Jesus, however, turned the question around,” the Pope said.
Instead of dwelling on the number of the saved, whether few or many, the Lord “places the answer on the plane of responsibility, inviting us to use the present time well.”
Jesus calls everyone “to enter through the narrow gate,” showing that it is not a question of numbers, but of “going through the right passage, which is there for everyone.” Pope Francis explained that “Jesus does not want to deceive us” with promises of “a beautiful highway, and at the end a wide door.” Rather, the passage is narrow, in the sense of demanding. In order to be saved, the Pope said, we must love God and our neighbour – and this is not “comfortable.” It is demanding, and requires us to “strive,” which the Pope said means having a “decisive and persevering will to live according to the Gospel.”