With tens of thousands of Catholic charismatics from around the world and with dozens of Pentecostal and evangelical leaders present, Pope Francis celebrated Pentecost Mass June 4 in St. Peter’s Square and concluded a five-day celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Catholic charismatic renewal.
“In a way both creative and unexpected,” the pope said, the Holy Spirit “generates diversity, for in every age … Then he brings about unity: he joins together, gathers and restores harmony.”
In his homily at the Mass, the pope said Christians can block the unity in diversity desired by the Holy Spirit by focusing on their differences rather than on what they share.
It sounds like he would accuse preaching Revelations 18:4 as “blocking unity”.
“This happens when we want to separate, when we take sides and form parties, when we adopt rigid and airtight positions, when we become locked into our own ideas and ways of doing things, perhaps even thinking that we are better than others,” he said.
“When this happens,” the pope said, “we choose the part over the whole, belonging to this or that group before belonging to the church” and taking pride in being “Christians of the ‘right’ or the ‘left’ before being on the side of Jesus.”
The other temptation, he said, is to seek unity without tolerating diversity. “Here, unity becomes uniformity, where everyone has to do everything together and in the same way, always thinking alike.”
When Protestantism shall stretch her hand across the gulf to grasp the hand of the Roman power, when she shall reach over the abyss to clasp hands with spiritualism, when, under the influence of this threefold union, our country shall repudiate every principle of its Constitution as a Protestant and republican government and shall make provision for the propagation of papal falsehoods and delusions, then we may know that the time has come for the marvelous working of Satan and that the end is near.—Testimonies for the Church 5:451 (1885). LDE 131.4