The pope has come to America and people seem genuinely enamored by his presence. While perhaps some people may come to faith as a result of his visit, we do realize the vast differences that genuinely separate our faiths.
Christ says, "I am the way the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except by me. If you really know me, you will know my Father as well." (John 14:6)
Faith is our only justification and is a gift from God. "For it is by grace you have been saved through faith - and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God, not by works, so that no one can boast." (Ephesians 2:8, 9)
The Spirit intercedes in our prayers. "Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words." (Romans 8:26)
Our works are in response to the love of Christ and Christ alone, and not for justification or any other "good" in the eyes of people or God. "For we are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." (Ephesians 2:10)
We pray that those who listen to the pope, or anyone representing themselves as people of faith, hear the truth, and we pray that God's truth come to us through the Spirit. We pray that we are on guard, all of us, to speak the truth in love from God's Word and not our own understanding of God's Word.
We pray that good may come from the pope's widely covered visit, and that people are moved to the truth of God's grace through his Son Jesus Christ and Christ alone. We pray they hear and understand the miracle of justification provided from God's gift of his Son through his suffering, death, and resurrection, and that our only means of grace is from Christ and the gift of faith from the Spirit.
Hope Men's Ministry