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Magisterial Documents: Gaudete et Exultate

Magisterial Documents: Gaudete et Exultate

Francis, Apostolic Exhortation on The Call to Holiness in Today’s World
March 19, 2016, the Solemnity of Saint Joseph
The full document is available on the internet.

Brief Introduction

Gaudete et Exultate (GE) is the third Apostolic Exhortation issued by Pope Francis. GE is divided in five chapters and is a meditation on how to joyfully respond to Christ’s invitation to strive for holiness in daily life. Pope Francis begins to discuss the diversity of forms under which holiness appears: the saints and martyrs of the past as well as the saint next door who patiently fulfill their everyday duties with love and joy. In chapter 2 Francis discusses “two false forms of holiness that can lead us astray: gnosticism and pelagianism,” Chapter 3 centers on the example of Jesus, particularly in an interpretation of the Beatitudes and Matthew 25. In Chapter 4, Pope Francis discusses five “great expressions of love for God and neighbor” that he takes to be “of particular importance in the light of certain dangers and limitations present in today’s culture.” Those “signs or spiritual attitudes” will help us “understand the way of life to which the Lord calls us” to become more like him. In Chapter 5 Pope Francis addresses the spiritual combat continues that we “are not dealing merely with a battle against the world and a worldly mentality,” or “against our human weaknesses and proclivities… It is also a constant struggle against the devil, the prince of evil.”

Pope Francis concludes by calling on Mary’s intercession to help all walk with Jesus toward holiness. By following her example, Pope Francis urges, “we will share a happiness that the world will not be able to take from us.”


1-2, Rejoice and be Glad (Mt 5:12)

Chapter One
3-5, The Call to Holiness: The Saints Who Encourage and Accompany Us
6-9, The Saints “Next Door”
10-13, The Lord Calls
14-18, For You Too
19-24, Your Mission in Christ
25-31, Activity That Sanctifies
32-34, More Alive, More Human

Chapter Two
35, Two Subtle Enemies of Holiness
36, Contemporary Gnosticism
37-39, An Intellect without God and without Flesh
40-42, A doctrine without mystery
43-46, The Limits of Reason
47-48, Contemporary Pelagianism
49-51, A Will Lacking Humility
52-56, An often-overlooked Church Teaching
57-59, New Pelagians
60-62, The Summation of the Law

Chapter Three
63-64, In the Light of The Master
65-66, Going Against the Flow
67-70, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven”
71-74, “Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth”
75-76, “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted”
77-79, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled”
80-82, “Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy”
83-86, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God”
87-89, "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God”
90-94, “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven”
95, The Great Criterion
96-99, In Fidelity to the Master
100-103, Ideologies striking at the heart of the Gospel
104-110, The Worship most acceptable to God

Chapter Four
110-111, Signs of Holiness in Today’s World
112-121, Perseverance, Patience and Meekness
122-128, Joy and A Sense of Humor
129-139, Boldness and Passion
140-146, In Community
147-157, In Constant Prayer

Chapter Five
158, Spiritual Combat, Vigilance and Discernment
159, Combat and Vigilance
160-161, More than a myth
162-163, Alert and trustful
164-165, Spiritual corruption
166, Discernment
167-168, An Urgent Need
169, Always in the Light of the Lord
170-171, A supernatural Gift
172-173, Speak, Lord
174, The logic of gift and of the cross

176-177, Mary, Model and Teacher of Holiness

© This material has been compiled by Danielle M. Peters, S.T.D.
Copyright is reserved for The Marian Library/International Marian Research Institute.
Most recently updated in 2018.

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