As we all get to know our new Holy Father Pope Francis, it's useful to listen to what he has to say. There is a battle going on between the Press and the Pope. The Pope "seems" to be leaning liberal, which the press is biting on and saying, "Hooray! Finally! The Catholic Church is going to change its medieval doctrine, just like the Boy Scouts!"
But remember, the libs in the press report things through through their "lens" of the way that they "wish things to be," i.,e., liberal. Therefore the reporting on what the Pope said falsely comes out like this - "The Pope really cares about people, and therefore he is mobilizing to change the church's archaic teachings on homosexuality, abortion, and artificial birth control!"
But no such thing is happening. The Pope said that atheists can be saved, and that they should do good things according to their consciences. Jesus said that prostitutes would enter the kingdom of heaven before the Pharisees. See the parallel? Of course atheists can be saved, and of course everyone should do good. Should he have said that atheists should do bad things? The Pope said that he doesn't have the right to judge homosexuals. Good. No priest judges me for having the sinful nature I have when I go into confession, and the same rule applies to homosexuals WHEN THEY ENTER THE CONFESSIONAL. He never said that they don't have to repent of their sins (actions) to be saved. Never. A person's sinful nature is not sinful, only a person's actions are. And the Press DOES NOT make this distinction, but the Pope and all Catholics do.
So what to think? Is the Pope in a mad dash to make himself popular with the Press, or is something else going on here? Notice how the press isn't publishing Panzer-Pope articles anymore, or German Rottweiler stories because of rigid "archaic" dogma! No more "every priest is a pedophile" stories are being written either! What Pope Francis is doing is playing the Press for saps. No one is about to change the Church's teaching on homosexuality, abortion, or artificial contraception! But the perception of the Catholic Church as being loving, caring, and a friend of the poor (what it REALLY is) is now front and center in the press.
This is long overdue, and it's our job out here in the world of the laity to explain to the lost what the Church is really about - TOTAL Love of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, and TOTAL love of neighbor. And if you truly believe in those two things, and not just give them lip service, then there are certain things that you must do, and certain things that you must NOT do, which include the killing of babies, all non-marital sex, and the intentional artificial blocking of God's command to Adam and Noah to "Be fruitful and multiply!"
So Pope Francis gets a thumbs up from me for TOTALLY changing the conversation about the Church in the satanic press. He's using their own strength against them, like a martial artist fighter does. Satan really doesn't know what hit him, as he thought that he was the only person who used a person's strength against themselves! HERE IS THE COMPLETE INTERVIEW HE GAVE TO THE JESUIT MAGAZINE .
Here are some of his quotes :
On Jesus Christ:
"When one does not profess Jesus Christ, one professes the worldliness of the devil."
On need for the church to evangelize:
"We need to avoid the spiritual sickness of a church that is wrapped up in its own world: when a church becomes like this, it grows sick. It is true that going out on to the street implies the risk of accidents happening, as they would to any ordinary man or woman. But if the church stays wrapped up in itself, it will age. And if I had to choose between a wounded church that goes out on to the streets and a sick, withdrawn church, I would definitely choose the first one."
On using technology:
"We also try to reach out to people who are far away, via digital means, the web and brief messaging."
On unmarried mothers:
"In our ecclesiastical region there are priests who don't baptize the children of single mothers because they weren't conceived in the sanctity of marriage. These are today's hypocrites. Those who clericalize the church. Those who separate the people of God from salvation. And this poor girl who, rather than returning the child to sender, had the courage to carry it into the world, must wander from parish to parish so that it's baptized!"
"An example I often use to illustrate the reality of vanity, is this: look at the peacock; it's beautiful if you look at it from the front. But if you look at it from behind, you discover the truth … Whoever gives in to such self-absorbed vanity has huge misery hiding inside them."
On the Roman curia:
"I see it as a body that gives service, a body that helps me and serves me. Sometimes negative news does come out, but it is often exaggerated and manipulated to spread scandal. Journalists sometimes risk becoming ill from coprophilia and thus fomenting coprophagia: which is a sin that taints all men and women, that is, the tendency to focus on the negative rather than the positive aspects."
On Argentina's gay marriage bill:
"Let's not be naive: this isn't a simple political fight, it's an attempt to destroy God's plan. This is no mere legislative bill. It is a move by the father of lies to confuse and deceive the children of God.”
Concerning outreach of the Church in Buenos Aires:
"Instead of just being a Church that welcomes and receives, we try to be a Church that comes out of itself and goes to the men and women who do not participate in parish life, do not know much about it and are indifferent towards it. We organize missions in public squares where many people usually gather: we pray, we celebrate mass, we offer baptism which we administer after a brief preparation."
“In our city there are people committing human sacrifice, killing the dignity of these men and these women, these girls and boys that are submitted to this treatment, to slavery. We cannot remain calm.” …. The cardinal urged his fellow citizens to report “breeding grounds for submission, for slavery,” “altars where human sacrifices are offered and which break the will of the people,” asking that “everyone do what they can, but without washing their hands of it, because otherwise we are complicit in this slavery.”
On the “discarding culture":
"This culture consists of applying the “death penalty” through abortion, and in “hidden euthanasia” of the elderly through neglect and maltreatment.…“there is hidden euthanasia, the social infrastructure pays up to a certain limit, but discards the elderly when, in fact, they are the seat of the wisdom of the people.” Children “are maltreated; they are neither educated nor nourished. Many are forced to prostitute and exploit themselves.”
Concerning a hands-on approach to the poor:
“We must always be on guard,” exhorted the Pope to those who attended Mass in the Vatican’s Santa Marta guesthouse, “on guard against deceit, against the seduction of evil.”
Referencing the day’s gospel reading, in which Jesus has just healed a possessed man and is accused of casting out demons by the power of the devil, the Pope noted that often in history there have been those who wish to “diminish the power of the Lord” by offering different explanations for his works, urging that his is a temptation which has “reached our present day.”
“There are some priests who, when they read this Gospel passage, this and others, say: ‘But, Jesus healed a person with a mental illness.’”
“It is true,” he affirmed, “that at that time, they could confuse epilepsy with demonic possession; but it is also true that there was the devil! And we do not have the right to simplify the matter. No!”
“The presence of the devil is on the first page of the Bible, and the Bible ends as well with the presence of the devil, with the victory of God over the devil.”
Observing that the Lord has given many criteria in order to “discern” the presence of evil in our lives, the Pope stressed that “we should not be naïve,” and that one of the criteria which has been given is “not to follow the victory of Jesus” just “halfway.”
“Either you are with me, says the Lord, or you are against me” he said, noting that Jesus came to conquer the devil and “to give us the freedom” from “the enslavement the devil has over us,” which he cautioned, is not “exaggerating.”
“On this point, there are no nuances. There is a battle and a battle where salvation is at play, eternal salvation; eternal salvation.”
He exhorted those in attendance to question themselves, asking “Do I guard myself, my heart, my feelings, my thoughts? Do I guard the treasure of grace? Do I guard the presence of the Holy Spirit in me? Or do I let go, feeling secure, believing that all is going well?”
“If you do not guard yourself, he who is stronger than you will come,” warned Pope Francis, “But if someone stronger comes and overcomes, he takes away the weapons in which one trusted, and he shall divide the spoil.”
“Vigilance…Do not confuse the truth!” stressed the pontiff, giving three criteria of his own to use in the spiritual combat.
“Jesus fights the devil: first criterion. Second criterion: he who is not with Jesus is against Jesus. There are no attitudes in the middle. Third criterion: vigilance over our hearts because the devil is astute. He is never cast out forever. It will only be so on the last day.”
Pope Francis recounted the biblical analogy of the impure spirit who leaves a man, noting that once the spirit is gone “it wanders in deserted places, and seeking rest and finding none, says: ‘I will return to my house, from which I left.’”
When the spirit returns and finds it “swept clean and adorned,” he explained, it then “takes another seven spirits worse than he, who come and make their homes,” and in that way “the last state of man becomes worse than the first.”
“Vigilance,” he stressed, “because his strategy is this: ‘You became Christian. Advance in your faith. I will leave you. I will leave you tranquil. But then when you are used to not being so watchful and you feel secure, I will come back.’”
“The Gospel today begins with the devil being cast out and ends with the devil coming back! These are not lies,” he urged, “it is the Word of the Lord!”
“Let us ask the Lord for the grace to take these things seriously. He came to fight for our salvation. He won against the devil! Please, let us not do business with the devil! He seeks to return home, to take possession of us… Do not relativize; be vigilant! And always with Jesus!”