Catholic News Service
Pope Francis
Catholic News Service
Pope Francis
Every New Year, resolutions are like fleas, thick on the ground. Lose weight; eat healthier, save money, etc.

Leave it to Pope Francis to remind us that those new year’s resolutions ought to involve the community as well.

According to the pope, the new year will be brighter only if everyone steps outside his/her safe havens, gets involved and works together to solve local problems with generosity and love.

Leading the annual Te Deumprayer service to thank God for his blessings in 2013 and the gift of salvation in Christ, the pope asked people to reflect on how they have spent the past year — the days, weeks and months the Lord has given as a gift to everyone.

“Have we used it mostly for ourselves, for our own interests or did we know to spend it for others, too? How much time did we set aside for being with God, in prayer, in silence, in adoration?”

People should also reflect on how they used their time to contribute to their communities.

The quality of life in a community — how it runs and looks — depends on everyone, he said in his homily, which he delivered standing behind a lectern.

“A city’s face is like a mosaic in which the tiles are all those who live there,” he said.

While public officials and other leaders certainly have more responsibility, “everyone is co-responsible, for the good and bad.”

How will we contribute this year to our parish, our city, our family, our church?

What will we do, how will we act in the new year to make our communities better?

Get to it.