ROME — The first Christians were not complainers, Pope Francis said Saturday, because “sad people are not Christians.”
“We think of the first Christians, who had everyone against them, who were persecuted and yet they didn’t complain about the world,” the pope told participants in an international conference on evangelization taking place in Rome.
“Reading the New Testament, we see that they were not concerned with defending themselves against an empire that put them to death, but with announcing Jesus, even at the cost of their lives,” he said.
The pontiff also had strong words against defeatism and pessimism, urging his hearers to be joyful in witnessing to Christ.
“So let us not be saddened by the things that are not going well, by fatigues, by misunderstandings, by gossip, no. These are little things in the face of ‘the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord,’” he said, quoting