Today in his homily Pope Francis stressed the necessity for Christians not to be too rigid but to strive for reconciliation, saying that insulting another is like giving a slap to his soul.
In a report from Vatican Radio:
Pope Francis warned on Thursday against an excessive rigidity, saying those within the Church who tell us “it’s this or nothing” are heretics and not Catholics. His remarks came the morning Mass on Thursday celebrated at the Santa Marta residence.
In his homily the Pope reflected on the harm caused by Churchmen who do the opposite of what they preach and urged them to free themselves from a rigid idealism that prevents reconciliation between each other.
Taking his cue from Jesus’ warning to his disciples that unless their righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees they will not enter into the Kingdom of Heaven, Pope Francis stressed the importance of Christian realism. Jesus, he said, asks us to go beyond the laws and love God and neighbor, stressing that whoever is angry with their brother will be liable to judgement.
The Pope said we have “a very creative vocabulary for insulting others” but stressed that such insults are a sin and are akin to killing because they are giving a slap to our brother’s soul and to his dignity. Noting the presence of several children at the Mass, Pope Francis urged them to stay calm, saying the preaching of a child in a church is much more beautiful than that of a priest, bishop or of the Pope.
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