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Jews and Catholics face the challenges of religion in contemporary society

In Uncategorized on 2014/08/22 at 12:00 AM

Vatican City (VIS) – The International Catholic-Jewish Liaison Committee (ILC), the official forum for ongoing dialogue between the Holy See´s Commission for Religious Relations with the Jews and the International Jewish Committee for Interreligious Consultations (IJCIC), held its 22nd meeting in Madrid, Spain, from 13-16 October, 2013. The meeting was co-chaired by Betty Ehrenberg, chair of IJCIC and Cardinal Kurt Koch, president of the Holy See’s Commission for Religious Relations with the Jews. The theme of the meeting was “Challenges for Religion in Contemporary Society”, and at the end the participants published a joint declaration that touched upon several important points:“1. Our Shared HeritageJews and Christians share the heritage of the biblical testimony of God’s relationship with the human family throughout history. Our Scriptures bear witness to both individuals and the people as a whole being called, taught, guided and protected by Divine Providence. In light of this sacred history, Catholic and Jewish participants in the meeting responded to emerging opportunities and difficulties facing religious belief and practice in today’s world.

2. Religious Freedom

Encouraged in our work by Pope Francis’ expressions of his concern for the universal welfare of all, particularly the poor and the oppressed, we share the belief in the God-given dignity of every individual. This requires that each person be accorded full freedom of conscience and freedom of religious expression individually and institutionally, privately and publicly. We deplore the abuse of religion, the use of religion for political ends. Both Jews and Catholics condemn persecution on religious grounds.

3. Persecution of Christians

The ILC recommends to the Vatican Commission for Religious Relations with the Jews and IJCIC to work together on situations involving the persecution of Christian minorities worldwide as they arise; to call attention to these problems and to support efforts to guarantee full citizenship to all citizens regardless of religious or ethnic identity in the Middle East and beyond. Further, we encourage efforts to promote the well-being of minority Christian and Jewish communities throughout the Middle East.

4. The Rise of Anti-Semitism

As Pope Francis has repeatedly said, ‘a Christian cannot be an anti-Semite’. We encourage all religious leaders to continue to be a strong voice against this sin. The celebration of the 50th anniversary of ‘Nostra Aetate’ in 2015 is a privileged moment in which to reaffirm its condemnation of anti-Semitism. We urge that anti-Semitic teachings be eliminated from preaching and textbooks everywhere in the world. Similarly, any expression of anti-Christian sentiment is equally unacceptable.

5. Education

We recommend that all Jewish and Catholic seminaries include instruction about “Nostra Aetate” and the subsequent documents of the Holy See implementing the Council’s Declaration in their curricula. As a new generation of Jewish and Catholic leaders arises, we underscore the profound ways that ‘Nostra Aetate’ changed the relationship between Jews and Catholics. It is imperative that the next generation embrace these teachings and ensure that they reach every corner of the world.

In the face of these challenges, we Catholics and Jews renew our commitment to educate our own respective communities in the knowledge of and respect for each other”.

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Gossip is a form of murder

In Uncategorized on 2014/07/25 at 12:00 AM

Pope Francis focused on the topic of gossip – saying that when we participate in this sin, we imitate Cain’s gesture in killing his brother Abel.

The Pope began his homily by echoing the words of Jesus in the gospel reading, “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?”

He spoke for a few minutes on the virtue of humility, adding that Jesus addressed those who practice the opposite and who foster “that hateful attitude towards one’s neighbor when one becomes a ‘judge’ of his brother,” calling them “hypocrites.”

“Those who live judging their neighbor, speaking ill of their neighbor, are hypocrites, because they lack the strength and the courage to look to their own shortcomings.”

Pope Francis said that the “Lord does not waste many words on this concept,” and that “he who has hatred in his heart for his brother is a murderer.”

The Pope added that in his first letter, John the Apostle emphasizes that “anyone who has hatred for his brother is a murderer, he walks in darkness, he who judges his brother walks in darkness,” and that those who judge or speak ill of others are “Christian murderers.”

“A Christian murderer…It’s not me saying this, it’s the Lord. And there is no place for nuances. If you speak ill of your brother, you kill your brother. And every time we do this, we are imitating that gesture of Cain, the first murderer in History.”

During this time when there is so much debate and discussion about war amid cries for peace, the pontiff pleaded that “a gesture of conversion on our own behalf is necessary.”

“Gossip,” he cautioned, “always has a criminal side to it. There is no such thing as innocent gossip.”

Quoting St. James the Apostle, the Pope imparted that the tongue is designed to praise God, “but when we use our tongue to speak ill of our brother or sister, we are using it to kill God…the image of God in our brother.”

He said that although there are some who believe certain persons deserve to be gossiped about, that is not the case. Rather, he encouraged the Mass attendees to “Go and pray for him! Go and do penance for her! And then, if it is necessary, speak to that person who may be able to seek remedy for the problem. But don’t tell everyone!”

“Paul had been a sinner, and he says of himself: ‘I was once a blasphemer, a persecutor, a violent man. But I have been mercifully treated.’”

Pope Francis challenged those present, saying that perhaps none are blasphemers, but that “if we ever gossip we are certainly persecutors and violent.”

“We ask for grace so that we and the entire Church may convert from the crime of gossip to love, to humility, to meekness, to docility, to the generosity of love towards our neighbor.”

Catholic News Agency

What gate?

In Uncategorized on 2014/07/11 at 12:00 AM

The Gospel of the Good Shepherd in which Jesus describes Himself as “the gate for the sheep” was the focus of Pope Francis’ homily Monday morning.

Jesus tells his disciples that whoever does not enter the sheepfold through the gate, is not a shepherd, but a thief and a robber. In short, said Pope Francis, someone who seeks to profit for themselves, who only wants to climb the social ladder. The only gate to the Kingdom of God, to the Church – the Pope said – is Jesus Himself:

“These social climbers exist even in the Christian communities, no? those people who are looking for their own… and consciously or unconsciously pretend to enter but are thieves and robbers. Why? Why steal the glory from Jesus? They want glory for themselves and this is what [Jesus] said to the Pharisees: ‘You seek for each other’s approval.’.

“That’s something of a ‘commercial’ religion, don’t you think? I give glory to you and you give glory to me. But these people did not enter through the true gate. The [true] gate is Jesus and those who do not enter by this gate are mistaken. How do I know that Jesus is the true gate? How do I know that this gate is Jesus’s gate? It’s enough to take the Beatitudes and do what the Beatitudes say. Be humble, poor, gentle, just. “.

Pope Francis continued, noting that Jesus is not only the gate, he is also the way, the path to follow on our journey. He said there are many paths that we can follow, some perhaps more advantageous than others in getting ahead, but they are “misleading, they are not real: they are false. The only path is Jesus “:

“Some of you may say: ‘Father, you’re a fundamentalist!’. No, simply put, this is what Jesus said : ‘I am the gate’, ‘I am the path’ [He] gives life to us. Simple. It is a beautiful gate, a gate of love, it is a gate that does not deceive, it is not false. It always tells the truth. But with tenderness and love.”

“However, we still have [.] the source of original sin within us, is not it so? We still desire to possess the key to interpreting everything, the key and the power to find our own path, whatever it is, to find our own gate, whatever it is.”

“Sometimes” – the Pope said – “we are tempted to be too much our own bosses and not humble children and servants of the Lord”:

“And this is the temptation to look for other gates or other windows to enter the Kingdom of God. We can only enter by the gate whose name is Jesus. We can only enter by that gate which leads to a path and that path is called Jesus and brings to a life whose name is Jesus. All those who do something else – says the Lord – who try to enter through the window, are ‘thieves and robbers’. He is simple, the Lord. His words are not complex: He is simple”.

The Pope concluded by inviting all those present to ask for “the grace to always knock on that gate”:

“Sometimes it’s closed: we are sad, we feel desolation, we have problems with knocking, with knocking at that gate. Do not go looking for other gates that seem easier, more comfortable, more at hand. Always the same one: Jesus. Jesus never disappoints, Jesus does not deceive, Jesus is not a thief, not a robber. He gave his life for me: each of us must say this: ‘And you who gave your life for me, please, open, that I may enter.’ ”

Vatican Radio

Be Open to God’s Surprises

In Uncategorized on 2014/07/04 at 12:00 AM

In his homily, Francis noted that “we contemplate and re-live in the liturgy the outpouring of the Holy Spirit sent by the Risen Christ upon his Church; an event of grace which filled the Upper Room in Jerusalem and then spread throughout the world.”

“Newness,” he said, “always makes us a bit fearful, because we feel more secure if we have everything under control, if we are the ones who build, programme, and plan our lives … This is also the case when it comes to God. … It is hard to abandon ourselves to him with complete trust, allowing the Holy Spirit to be the soul and guide of our lives … We fear that God may force us to strike out on new paths and leave behind our all too narrow, closed and selfish horizons in order to become open to his own. Yet throughout the history of salvation, whenever God reveals himself, He brings newness—God always brings newness—and demands our complete trust: Noah, mocked by all, builds an ark and is saved; Abram leaves his land with only a promise in hand; Moses stands up to the might of Pharaoh and leads his people to freedom; the apostles, huddled fearfully in the Upper Room, go forth with courage to proclaim the Gospel. This is not a question of newness for novelty’s sake, the search for something new to relieve our boredom … The newness which God brings into our life is something that actually brings fulfilment, that gives true joy, true serenity, because God loves us and desires only our good. Let us ask ourselves today: Are we open to ‘God’s surprises’? Or are we closed and fearful before the newness of the Holy Spirit? Do we have the courage to strike out along the new paths which God’s newness sets before us, or do we resist, barricaded in transient structures which have lost their capacity for openness to what is new? We would do well to ask ourselves these questions all through the day.”

“The Holy Spirit,” the pontiff continued, “would appear to create disorder in the Church, since he brings the diversity of charisms and gifts; yet all this, by his working, is a great source of wealth, for the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of unity, which does not mean uniformity, but which leads everything back to harmony. In the Church, it is the Holy Spirit who creates harmony. … Only the Spirit can awaken diversity, plurality, and multiplicity, while at the same time building unity. Here too, when we are the ones who try to create diversity and close ourselves up in what makes us different and other, we bring division. When we are the ones who want to build unity in accordance with our human plans, we end up creating uniformity, standardization. But if instead we let ourselves be guided by the Spirit, richness, variety and diversity never become a source of conflict, because he impels us to experience variety within the communion of the Church. … Having a sense of the Church is something fundamental for every Christian, every community, and every movement. It is the Church which brings Christ to me, and me to Christ; parallel journeys are very dangerous! When we venture beyond the Church’s teaching and community … and do not remain in them, we are not one with the God of Jesus Christ.”

In his last point, the Pope observed that “early theologians used to say that the soul is a kind of sailboat, the Holy Spirit is the wind which fills its sails and drives it forward, and the gusts of wind are the gifts of the Spirit. Lacking his impulse and his grace, we do not go forward. The Holy Spirit draws us into the mystery of the living God and saves us from the threat of a Church which is gnostic and self-referential, closed in on herself; He impels us to open the doors and go forth to proclaim and bear witness to the goodness of the Gospel … The Holy Spirit is the soul of mission. The events that took place in Jerusalem almost two thousand years ago are not something far removed from us; they are events which affect us and become a lived experience in each of us. The Pentecost of the Upper Room in Jerusalem is the beginning, a beginning which endures. … It is the Paraclete, the ‘Comforter’, who grants us the courage to take to the streets of the world, bringing the Gospel! The Holy Spirit makes us look to the horizon and urges us toward the very outskirts of existence in order to proclaim life in Jesus Christ.”

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More Christian Persecuted Than in the First Centuries

In Uncategorized on 2014/06/23 at 12:00 AM

The Holy Father commented on Jesus’ discourse in Jerusalem about the end of time. Jesus exhorted the apostles not to be deceived by false messiahs and not to be paralysed by fear, but rather to live this moment of waiting in hope, as a time of witness and perseverance.

The Holy Father emphasised the relevance of these words even to us now in the twenty-first century. “It is a call to discernment”, he said. “Even nowadays, in fact, there are false ‘saviours’ who seek to take Jesus’ place: leaders of this world, gurus, holy men, people who want to attract hearts and minds, especially of young people. Jesus warns us: ‘do not follow them’. And the Lord also helps us not to be afraid when faced with wars and revolutions, natural disasters and epidemics: Jesus liberates us from fatalism and false apocalyptic visions. … He reminds us that we are entirely in God’s hands! The adversity we encounter on account of our faith and our adhesion to the Gospel are opportunities for witness; they should not turn us away from the Lord but rather encourage us to abandon ourselves more fully to Him, to the strength of His Spirit and His grace”.

“In this moment”, he continued, unscripted, “let us think of the many Christian brothers and sisters who suffer persecution for their faith. There are many of them. Perhaps more than in the first centuries. Jesus is with them. Let us also be united with them by our prayer and our affection. Let us admire their courage and their witness. They are our brothers and sisters, who in many parts of the world suffer for being faithful to Jesus Christ. Let us extend our heartfelt and affectionate greetings to them”.

Francis highlighted Jesus’ promise to us as a guarantee of victory: “’Stand firm, and you will win life’. … This is a call to hope and patience, to know how to await the certain fruits of salvation, trusting in the deep meaning of life and history; the trials and difficulties form part of a greater design, and the Lord, the master of history, guides all to its fulfilment. Despite the disorder and catastrophes that afflict the world, God’s plan of goodness and mercy will prevail”.

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Eucharist is not magic

In Uncategorized on 2014/06/13 at 12:00 AM

Pope Francis gave special emphasis to the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist, saying that it is not magical act, but an encounter with the living God.

Pope Francis delivered this to those who gathered in the Vatican’s guest house, Santa Marta, for a private liturgy.

The Holy Father drew his reflections from the morning’s reading from the passage in psalms, “We will go with joy to the House of the Lord,” saying to those gathered that the Sacrament of the Eucharist is not a “magic rite,” but rather an encounter with Jesus, who is our constant companion in life.

Throughout the history of God’s people, the Pope said, there have been many “beautiful moments which bring joy,” but also moments “of pain, martyrdom and sin.”

However, the Pope noted that “God, who has no History because He is eternal, desired to make History by walking alongside His people.”

“He decided to become one of us, and as one of us, to walk with us through Jesus.”

Pope Francis stressed that this act not only shows us the greatness of God, but also his humility, saying that when his people strayed from him “in sin and idolatry,” he did not abandon them, but “He was there” waiting for their return.

Jesus shows us the same humility, said the Pope, in that “he walks with the People of God, walks with the sinners; walks also with the arrogant,” adding that Jesus did much to “help these arrogant hearts of the Pharisees.”

The Church, stressed the pontiff, can rejoice in the humility of God which accompanies us as “We go with joy to the House of the Lord.”

“We go with joy because He accompanies us, He is with us…and the Lord Jesus, even in our personal lives, accompanies us with the Sacraments. The Sacrament is not a magic rite: it is an encounter with Jesus Christ; we encounter the Lord – it is He who is beside us and accompanies us.”

(CNA/EWTN News).

Jesus’ Compassion Is Like A Mother’s Love

In Uncategorized on 2014/05/02 at 12:00 AM

“Popular piety,”  Pope Francis said, “embraces many symbols and the Heart of Jesus is the ultimate symbol of God’s mercy. It is not, however, an imaginary symbol but a real symbol that represents the centre, the source from which flows the salvation for all of humanity.” Among various references in the Gospels to the Heart of Jesus, the Pope emphasized the witness of Christ’s death according to St. John. When Jesus was already dead, a soldier pierced his side with a lance and immediately blood and water flowed out. “John recognized in that, apparently random, sign the fulfilment of the prophecies: from the heart of Jesus, the Lamb sacrificed upon the Cross, spring forth forgiveness and life for all humanity.”

“But Jesus’ mercy is not just a feeling. It is a force that gives life, that brings humanity back to life! Today’s Gospel reading says the same thing, in the story of the widow of Naim. Jesus, with his disciples, is arriving in Naim, a village in Galilee, at exactly the moment of a funeral. A young man, the only son of a widowed woman is being carried out to be buried. Jesus’ gaze immediately fixes upon the crying mother. The Gospel writer Luke tells us: ‘When the Lord saw her, He was moved with pity for her’. This compassion is God’s love for humanity. It is mercy, that is, God’s attitude in contact with human misery, with our indigence, our suffering, our anguish. The biblical term ‘compassion’ recalls the maternal womb: indeed, a mother feels a reaction all her own when faced with her children’s pain. That is how God loves us, Scripture says.”

“And what is the fruit of this love, this mercy? It is life! Jesus said to the widow of Naim: ‘Do not weep’, and he called to the dead son and woke him as if from sleep. Let’s think about this. It’s beautiful. God’s mercy gives life to the man, raises him from the dead. The Lord always looks upon us with mercy … awaits us with mercy. Let us not be afraid to draw near to him! He has a merciful heart! If we show him our inner wounds, our sins, He always forgives us. He is pure mercy!”

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Mary and Martha

In Uncategorized on 2014/04/11 at 12:00 AM

 The Holy Father’s Sunday meditation before praying the Angelus this morning was dedicated to Jesus’ visit to the house of Martha and Mary in Bethany in the Gospel of St. Luke, and the two key themes of Christian life: contemplation, listening to the Word of God and the concrete service of our neighbour. These are not to be experienced separately, but rather are two aspects to be lived “in profound unity and harmony”.

The Bishop of Rome explained to the thousands of the faithful gathered in St. Peter’s Square that the two sisters “both welcome the Lord, but in different ways. Mary sits at Jesus’ feet, listening, whereas Martha is absorbed in domestic tasks and is so busy that she turns to Jesus saying: ‘Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me by myself to do the serving? Tell her to help me’. And Jesus responds rebuking her with sweetness. ‘Martha, Martha, you are anxious and worried about many things. There is the need for only one thing’”.

“What does Jesus wish to say?” continued the Pope. “Above all it is important to understand that it is not a matter of two contrasting attitudes: listening to the Word of the Lord – contemplation – and concrete service to our neighbour. They are not two opposed attitudes but, on the contrary, they are both aspects that are essential for our Christian life; aspects that must never be separated but rather lived in profound unity and harmony”.

“So why does Jesus rebuke Martha? Because she considered only what she was doing to be essential; she was too absorbed and worried about things to ‘do’. For a Christian, the works of service and charity are never detached from the principle source of our action: that is, listening to the Word of the Lord, sitting – like Mary – at Jesus’ feet in the attitude of a disciple. And for this reason Mary is rebuked”.

Pope Francis affirmed that “in our Christian life too prayer and action are always profoundly united. Prayer that does not lead to concrete action toward a brother who is poor, sick, in need of help … is a sterile and incomplete prayer. But, in the same way, when in ecclesial service we are only concerned with what we are doing, we give greater weight to things, functions and structures, forgetting the centrality of Christ; we do not set aside time for dialogue with Him in prayer, we run the risk of serving ourselves and not God, present in our brother in need”.

“Let us ask the Virgin Mary, Mother of listening and service, who teaches us to meditate on the Word of her Son in our heart, to pray with fidelity, and to be ever more concretely attentive to the needs of our brothers”.

Really Knowing Jesus

In Uncategorized on 2014/04/03 at 12:00 AM

(Romereports.com) Pope Francis explained during morning Mass at  Casa Santa Marta that to get to know Jesus, means that you must complicate your life. And that you cannot get to know him by flying “first class” in life.

POPE FRANCIS
“You cannot know Jesus without getting oneself involved with Him, without betting your life on Him.”
The Pope added that there are three languages everyone must speak to get to know Jesus. They are the languages of the heart, the mind, and of action.
POPE FRANCIS
Yes, you have to come to know Jesus in the Catechism – but it is not enough to know Him with the mind: it is a step. However, it is necessary to get to know Jesus in dialogue with Him, talking with Him in prayer, kneeling. If you do not pray, if you do not talk with Jesus, you do not know Him. You know things about Jesus, but you do not go with that knowledge, which He gives your heart in prayer. Know Jesus with the mind – the study of the Catechism: know Jesus with the heart – in prayer, in dialogue with Him. This helps us a good bit, but it is not enough. There is a third way to know Jesus: it is by following Him. Go with Him, walk with Him. To go, to walk along the streets, journeying is to know Jesus in the language of action.
The Pope also explained that many people ask themselves the same question Herod posed himself on Jesus: “Who is He?” The Pope went on to say that the answer can only be found by walking with Him in our everyday problems.
EXCERPTS FROM POPE’S HOMILY:
(Source: Vatican Radio)
“You cannot know Jesus without having problems. And I dare say, ‘But if you want to have a problem, go to the street to know Jesus – you’ll end up having not one, but many!’ But that is the way to get to know Jesus! You cannot know Jesus in first class! One gets to know Jesus in going out into everyday life. You cannot get to know Jesus in peace and quiet, nor even in the library: Know Jesus.
 
“Yes, you have to come to know Jesus in the Catechism – but it is not enough to know Him with the mind: it is a step. However, it is necessary to get to know Jesus in dialogue with Him, talking with Him in prayer, kneeling. If you do not pray, if you do not talk with Jesus, you do not know Him. You know things about Jesus, but you do not go with that knowledge, which He gives your heart in prayer. Know Jesus with the mind – the study of the Catechism: know Jesus with the heart – in prayer, in dialogue with Him. This helps us a good bit, but it is not enough. There is a third way to know Jesus: it is by following Him. Go with Him, walk with Him. To go, to walk along the streets, journeying is to know Jesus in the language of action.
 
 
“You cannot know Jesus without getting oneself involved with Him, without betting your life on Him. When so many people – including us – poses this question: ‘But, who is He?’, The Word of God responds, ‘You want to know who He is? Read what the Church tells you about Him, talk to Him in prayer and walk the street with him. Thus, will you know who this man is.’ This is the way! Everyone must make his choice.”
Rome Reports & Vatican Radio

Sacrament of Confession is not a ‘torture chamber’

In Uncategorized on 2014/03/13 at 12:00 AM

“Confessing our sins is not going to a psychiatrist, or to a torture chamber: it’s saying to the Lord, ‘Lord, I am a sinner,’ but saying it through the brother, because this says it concretely. ‘I am sinner because of this, that and the other thing.’”Pope Francis opened his homily by reflecting that for many believing adults, the idea of confessing one’s sins to a priest is either so unbearable that they completely avoid the Sacrament, or the process is so painful that the truth is transformed into a form of fiction.

Recalling St. Paul’s words in his letter to the Roman’s from the day’s readings, the Pope noted that the apostle did the opposite, confessing publicly that “good does not dwell in me, that is, in my flesh,” and that he doesn’t do the good that he wants, but only the evil which he hates.

The Pope stressed that it often happens in the life of faith that “when I want to do good, evil is close to me.”

“This is the struggle of Christians. It is our struggle every day. And we do not always have the courage to speak as Paul spoke about this struggle.”

Often, noted the pontiff, we seek to justify our sins by making excuses and saying that “we are all sinners,” and that this fight “is our struggle.”

“If we don’t recognize this, we will never be able to have God’s forgiveness,” urged the Pope, “because if being a sinner is a word, a way of speaking, a manner of speaking, we have no need of God’s forgiveness. But if it is a reality that makes us slaves, we need this interior liberation of the Lord, of that force.”

Pope Francis then emphasized that the most important element for Saint Paul in finding a way out of this justification was to confess his sin to the community, noting that “he doesn’t hide it,” and that the confession of one’s sins with humility is something which the Church requires of us all.

“Confess your sins to one another,” he said, repeating the words of Saint James, not to be noticed by others, but rather “to give glory to God” and to recognize that it is only him who can save.

This is why, stressed the Pope, we go to a “brother priest,” to confess, urging that when one confesses, it must be done with “concreteness.”

“Some say: ‘Ah, I confess to God.’ But it’s easy, it’s like confessing by email, no? God is far away, I say things and there’s no face-to-face, no eye-to-eye contact,” while “others (say)‘No, I go to confession,’ but they confess so many ethereal things, so many up-in-the-air things, that they don’t have anything concrete. And that’s the same as not doing it.”

Concreteness, honesty, and the genuine ability to be ashamed one’s mistakes are all qualities needed in order to be open to the forgiveness of God, as well as the deep awareness of his love, the Pope noted.

Concluding his reflections, Pope Francis stressed that in the face of confession, we should have the attitude of a small child, because “when a child comes to confess, he never says something general.”

“‘But father, I did this and I did that to my aunt, another time I said this word’ and they say the word. But they are concrete, eh? They have that simplicity of the truth.”

Although “we always have the tendency to hide the reality of our failings,” the Pope noted that “there is something beautiful: when we confess our sins as they are in the presence of God, we always feel that grace of shame.”

“Being ashamed in the sight of God is a grace. It is a grace: ‘I am ashamed of myself.’”

When we think of this kind of shame, the Pope stressed, “We think of Peter when, after the miracle of Jesus on the lake, (he said) ‘Depart from me, Lord, for I am a sinner.’”

National Catholic News Agency

Credit: Marianne Medlin/CNA.