Pope Francis has a remarkable and inspiring message of compassion and tolerance. Here are my favorite things he's said.
In his homily, Francis said the planet has enough food to feed the world but “it seems that there is a lack of willingness to share it with everyone.”
“We must do what we can so that everyone has something to eat. But we must also remind the powerful of the Earth that God will call them to judgment one day,” he said. “And there it will be revealed if they really tried to provide for him in every person, and if they did what they could to preserve the environment so that it could produce this food.”
“This church with which we should be thinking is the home of all, not a small chapel that can hold only a small group of selected people, We must not reduce the bosom of the universal church to a nest protecting our mediocrity.”
“I see the church as a field hospital after battle,” Francis said. “It is useless to ask a seriously injured person if he has high cholesterol and about the level of his blood sugars. You have to heal his wounds. Then we can talk about everything else.”
The view of the church’s teaching as a monolith to defend without nuance or different understandings is wrong.
“I do not like to use the word optimism because that is about a psychological attitude,” the pope says. “I like to use the word hope instead
“Christian hope is not a ghost and it does not deceive. It is a theological virtue and therefore, ultimately, a gift from God that cannot be reduced to optimism, which is only human. God does not mislead hope; God cannot deny himself. God is all promise.”
God is always a surprise, so you never know where and how you will find him
If one has the answers to all the questions — that is the proof that God is not with him. It means that he is a false prophet using religion for himself. The great leaders of the people of God, like Moses, have always left room for doubt. You must leave room for the Lord, not for our certainties; we must be humble.
… Our life is not given to us like an opera libretto, in which all is written down; but it means going, walking, doing, searching, seeing. … We must enter into the adventure of the quest for meeting God; we must let God search and encounter us.
… If the Christian is a restorationist, a legalist, if he wants everything clear and safe, then he will find nothing. Tradition and memory of the past must help us to have the courage to open up new areas to God. Those who today always look for disciplinarian solutions, those who long for an exaggerated doctrinal “security,” those who stubbornly try to recover a past that no longer exists — they have a static and inward-directed view of things. In this way, faith becomes an ideology among other ideologies. I have a dogmatic certainty: God is in every person’s life. God is in everyone’s life. Even if the life of a person has been a disaster, even if it is destroyed by vices, drugs or anything else — God is in this person’s life. You can, you must try to seek God in every human life. Although the life of a person is a land full of thorns and weeds, there is always a space in which the good seed can grow. You have to trust God.
We cannot insist only on issues related to abortion, gay marriage and the use of contraceptive methods. This is not possible.
it is not necessary to talk about these issues all the time.
The dogmatic and moral teachings of the church are not all equivalent. The church’s pastoral ministry cannot be obsessed with the transmission of a disjointed multitude of doctrines to be imposed insistently
The proposal of the Gospel must be more simple, profound, radiant. It is from this proposition that the moral consequences then flow.
A person once asked me, in a provocative manner, if I approved of homosexuality. I replied with another question: “Tell me: when God looks at a gay person, does he endorse the existence of this person with love, or reject and condemn this person?” We must always consider the person.
Who is Jorge Mario Bergoglio?
I am a sinner. This is the most accurate definition.
Religious fundamentalism, even before it eliminates human beings by perpetrating horrendous killings, eliminates God himself, turning him into a mere ideological pretext," he said.
“Why is it taken for granted that women must earn less than men? No! They have the same rights. The discrepancy is a pure scandal.”
“If a globalization tries to make everybody even, as if it were a sphere, that globalization destroys the richness and the specificities of each person and each people. If a globalization tries to unite everyone, but does so respecting each individual, each person, each richness, each specificity, respecting each people, that globalization is good and it enables us to keep growing and take us to peace.”
He asked specially that he didn't want so much security. And he explain it very well. "If I go to visit you to your house, do I go with in a box, glass box? No. If I go to your house to visit you, I want to be with you, near you and I want to touch you." And he said, "I know that someone, there always can be a crazy one that would do something. But I prefer this craziness to have this risk that there would be a barrier between me and the people."
“We need to go out to the outskirts where there is suffering, bloodshed, blindness that longs for sight, and prisoners in thrall to many evil masters,” he said at a mass in St Peter’s Basilica.
“It is not in soul-searching or constant introspection that we encounter the Lord.”
“Even if the life of a person has been a disaster, even if it is destroyed by vices, drugs, or anything else—God is in this person’s life. You can, you must try to seek God in every human life. Although the life of a person is a land full of thorns and weeds, there is always a space in which the good seed can grow. You have to trust God.”
“I prefer a Church which is bruised, hurting, and dirty because it has been out on the streets, rather than a Church which is unhealthy from being confined and from clinging to its own security.”
“Living together is an art. It's a patient art, it's a beautiful art, it's fascinating.”
“Instead of imposing new obligations, (Christians) should appear as people who wish to share their joy, who point to a horizon of beauty and who invite others to a delicious banquet.”
“Once man has lost the fundamental orientation which unifies his existence, he breaks down into the multiplicity of his desires; in refusing to await the time of promise, his life-story disintegrates into a myriad of unconnected instants.”
“The question of truth is really a question of memory, deep memory, for it deals with something prior to ourselves and can succeed in uniting us in a way that transcends our petty and limited individual consciousness. It is a question about the origin of all that is, in whose light we can glimpse the goal and thus the meaning of our common path.”
“How can it be that it is not a news item when an elderly homeless person dies of exposure but it is news when the stock market loses two points?”
We can find no social or moral justification, no justification whatsoever, for lack of housing.
— Pope Francis at St. Patrick's Church in DC, September 24, 2015
“She asks us to let go of decadent structures — they are useless.”
Why are deadly weapons being sold to those who plan to inflict untold suffering on individuals and society? Sadly, the answer, as we all know, is simply for money – money that is drenched in blood, often innocent blood.
— Speech before Congress, September 24
But there is another temptation which we must especially guard against: the simplistic reductionism which sees only good or evil; or, if you will, the righteous and sinners.
— Speech before Congress, September 24
The yardstick we use for others will be the yardstick time uses for us.
— Speech before Congress, September 24
“Harsh and divisive language does not befit the tongue of a pastor; it has no place in his heart. Although it may momentarily seem to win the day, only the enduring allure of goodness and love remains truly convincing.”
To the chagrin of security personnel, Francis prefers to communicate with the people without a bulletproof barrier, which he described as being inside a “sardine can.”
“It’s true that anything could happen,” he told a Barcelona newspaper. “But let’s face it, at my age I don’t have much to lose.”
Avoid the scandal of airport bishops
He explained his most controversial remarks criticizing the church's "obsession" with transmitting a disjointed set of moral doctrines, saying that in the church's "hierarchy of truths," mercy is paramount, proportion is necessary, and that what counts is inviting the faithful in.
"I prefer a church which is bruised, hurting and dirty because it has been out on the streets, rather than a church which is unhealthy from being confined and from clinging to its own security," he wrote. "I do not want a church concerned with being at the center and then ends up by being caught up in a web of obsessions and procedures."
He added: "More than by fear of going astray, my hope is that we will be moved by the fear of remaining shut up within structures which give us a false sense of security, within rules which make us harsh judges, within habits which make us feel safe, while at our door people are starving and Jesus does not tire of saying to us, 'Give them something to eat.'"
He reminded them that confession shouldn't be "torture," and told them to get out of their sacristies, get their shoes muddy, get involved in the lives of their faithful and not be defeatist "sourpusses."
"The promise was that when the glass was full, it would overflow, benefiting the poor," Francis said. "What happens instead is that when the glass is full, it magically gets bigger, but nothing ever comes out for the poor." - See more at: http://www.uscatholic.org/blog/201401/my-favorite-francis-quote-glass-magically-gets-bigger-28337#sthash.6gNSQGEk.dpuf
The dogmatic and moral teachings of the church are not all equivalent. The church’s pastoral ministry cannot be obsessed with the transmission of a disjointed multitude of doctrines to be imposed insistently.
Pope calls world leaders 'cowards' - CNN
“True wisdom, as the fruit of self-examination, dialogue and generous encounter between persons, is not acquired by a mere accumulation of data which eventually leads to overload and confusion, a sort of mental pollution. Real relationships with others, with all the challenges they entail, now tend to be replaced by a type of internet communication which enables us to choose or eliminate relationships at whim, thus giving rise to a new type of contrived emotion which has more to do with devices and displays than with other people and with nature. Today’s media do enable us to communicate and to share our knowledge and affections. Yet at times they also shield us from direct contact with the pain, the fears and the joys of others and the complexity of their personal experiences. For this reason, we should be concerned that, alongside the exciting possibilities offered by these media, a deep and melancholic dissatisfaction with interpersonal relations, or a harmful sense of isolation, can also arise.”
Laudato si' - The integral text of Pope Francis' Encyclical on care for our common home
One cause of this situation is found in our relationship with money, since we calmly accept its dominion over ourselves and our societies.
Just as the commandment “Thou shalt not kill” sets a clear limit in order to safeguard the value of human life, today we also have to say “thou shalt not” to an economy of exclusion and inequality. Such an economy kills. How can it be that it is not a news item when an elderly homeless person dies of exposure, but it is news when the stock market loses two points? This is a case of exclusion. Can we continue to stand by when food is thrown away while people are starving? This is a case of inequality. Today everything comes under the laws of competition and the survival of the fittest, where the powerful feed upon the powerless. As a consequence, masses of people find themselves excluded and marginalized: without work, without possibilities, without any means of escape.
Human beings are themselves considered consumer goods to be used and then discarded. We have created a “throw away” culture which is now spreading. It is no longer simply about exploitation and oppression, but something new. Exclusion ultimately has to do with what it means to be a part of the society in which we live; those excluded are no longer society’s underside or its fringes or its disenfranchised – they are no longer even a part of it. The excluded are not the “exploited” but the outcast, the “leftovers”.
In this context, some people continue to defend trickle-down theories which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world. This opinion, which has never been confirmed by the facts, expresses a crude and naïve trust in the goodness of those wielding economic power and in the sacralized workings of the prevailing economic system. Meanwhile, the excluded are still waiting. To sustain a lifestyle which excludes others, or to sustain enthusiasm for that selfish ideal, a globalization of indifference has developed. Almost without being aware of it, we end up being incapable of feeling compassion at the outcry of the poor, weeping for other people’s pain, and feeling a need to help them, as though all this were someone else’s responsibility and not our own. The culture of prosperity deadens us; we are thrilled if the market offers us something new to purchase. In the meantime all those lives stunted for lack of opportunity seem a mere spectacle; they fail to move us.
We continue to tolerate some considering themselves more worthy than others.
Each age tends to have only a meagre awareness of its own limitations.
Scientific and technological progress cannot be equated with the progress of humanity and history.
The culture of relativism drives one person to take advantage of another, to treat others as mere objects.
The emptier a person’s heart is, the more he or she needs to buy, own and consume. #LaudatoSi
Whatever is fragile, like the environment, is defenceless before the interests of a deified market.
Pope Francis ✔ @Pontifex
The alliance between economy and technology ends up sidelining anything unrelated to its immediate interests.
There is no room for the globalization of indifference. #LaudatoSi
Chapter 6 also highlights St Francis of Assisi as the model of “a more passionate concern for the protection of our world”, characterized by gratitude and generosity, creativity and enthusiasm.
it’s “bad business for society” to stop investing in people to achieve short-term financial gains
Technology: While it can bring progress towards sustainable development, without “a sound ethics”, it gives “those with the knowledge, and especially the economic resources… an impressive dominance over the whole of humanity”
The technocratic mentality: “the economy accepts every advance in technology with a view to profit……yet by itself the market cannot guarantee integral human development and social inclusion”
Practical relativism: environmental degradation and social decay is the result of seeing “everything as irrelevant unless it serves one’s own immediate interests”
The earth, our home, is beginning to look more and more like an immense pile of filth.
“It is man who has slapped nature in the face”
I think of how many, and not just young people, are unemployed, many times due to a purely economic conception of society, which seeks selfish profit, beyond the parameters of social justice.
"If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?"
The Lord has redeemed all of us, all of us, with the Blood of Christ: all of us, not just Catholics. Everyone! 'Father, the atheists?' Even the atheists. Everyone! And this Blood makes us children of God of the first class. We are created children in the likeness of God and the Blood of Christ has redeemed us all. And we all have a duty to do good. And this commandment for everyone to do good, I think, is a beautiful path towards peace. If we, each doing our own part, if we do good to others, if we meet there, doing good, and we go slowly, gently, little by little, we will make that culture of encounter: We need that so much. We must meet one another doing good. 'But I don't believe, Father, I am an atheist!' But do good: We will meet one another there."
"It hurts me when I see a priest or a nun with the latest model car, you can't do this," he said.
"A car is necessary to do a lot of work, but please, choose a more humble one. If you like the fancy one, just think about how many children are dying of hunger in the world," he said.
“Creation is not a property, which we can rule over at will; or, even less, is the property of only a few: Creation is a gift, it is a wonderful gift that God has given us, so that we care for it and we use it for the benefit of all, always with great respect and gratitude…while God always forgives, Creation never forgives and if we destroy Creation, in the end it will destroy us!”