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    » 05/22/2013, 00.00


    Pope says no to intolerance, everyone can and must do good, even atheists

    As he celebrated Mass this morning, Francis said that the possibility of doing good is part of creation, and that Christ redeemed all of us, not only Catholics. Doing good "is a beautiful path towards peace" whilst "killing in the name of God is blasphemy."

    Vatican City (AsiaNews) - Man, who was created in God's image "must" do good. This concerns us all, independently of ideologies and religions, even atheists, for the Lord "redeemed all of us, all of us, with the Blood of Christ; all of us, not just Catholics. Everyone! 'Father, what about the atheists?' Even atheists. Everyone!" During the Mass he celebrates every morning at the Domus Sanctae Marthae, which he carried out this morning together with Maronite Patriarch Bechara Boutros Rai, Pope Francis spoke about doing good as a principle that unites all humanity.

    The pontiff began his reflection with today's Gospel about the disciples who wanted to prevent a person from outside their group from doing good.

    "They complain" because they say, "If he is not one of us, he cannot do good. If he is not of our party, he cannot do good." But Jesus corrected them. 'Do not stop him,' he said. 'Let him do good'."

    "The disciples," the Pope said, "were a little 'intolerant', set on the idea that they owned the truth, believing that 'all those who do not have the truth cannot do good.' And 'this was wrong'." In fact, "Jesus 'broadens the horizon."

    "The root of this possibility of doing good," which we all have, "lies in creation. The Lord created us in His image and likeness, and we are the image of the Lord, and He does good and all of us have this commandment at heart: Do good and do not do evil. All of us. 'But, Father, he is not Catholic! He cannot do good.' Yes, he can. He must. 'He cannot.' He must! Because he has this commandment within him. Instead, such 'closing off' [of the mind], which makes us think that all those outside [of our group] cannot do good, is a barrier that leads to war as well as to what some throughout history have thought [possible], namely killing in the name of God, [the idea] that we can kill in the name of God. And that, simply put, is blasphemy. To say that you can kill in the name of God is blasphemy."

    "On the contrary, the Lord has created us in His image and likeness, and has given us this commandment in our heart: Do good and do not do evil. The Lord has redeemed all of us, all of us, with the Blood of Christ: all of us, not just Catholics. Everyone! 'Father, what about the atheists?' Even the atheists. Everyone! And this Blood makes us first class children of God! 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, with everyone doing his 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 meeting: 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 shall meet there."

    "Doing good" is not a matter of faith. "It is a duty. It is an identity card our Father gave all of us because He made us in His image and likeness. And He does good, always."

    "Today," the pope said, is [the feast day of] Saint Rita, patron saint of impossible things." Although doing good may "seem impossible, let us ask her this grace, this grace that everyone, everyone will do good; that we may meet [engaged] in this work, which is the work of creation, like the creation by the Father. Work done by the family, because we are all children of God, all of us, all of us! And God loves us, all of us! Let Saint Rita grant us this grace, even though it might seem almost impossible. Amen."

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    See also

    03/12/2008 VATICAN
    Evil is a “foul river” flowing through the world but goodness is stronger, says Pope
    Evil, which is at root of original sin, “comes from created freedom that is abused.” The contradiction between good and evil is man’s experience. But “evil is a subordinated source.” At a time of crisis banks should show solidarity “towards the weakest groups [of society] and support economic activities.”

    28/06/2009 VATICAN
    Follow Saint Paul in one’s passion for Christ and the Gospel, says Pope
    Benedict XVI sums up the positive results of the Pauline Year which comes to an end tonight. Saint Paul is also a model for priests in this Year for Priests which just began. The Pontiff greets the parish priest and the faithful from Latakiyah (Syria). Tonight the Pontiff will preside over Vespers in the Basilica of Saint Paul Outside the Walls, together with representatives of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople.

    27/02/2008 VATICAN
    Pope: Saint Augustine, model of a conversion "that lasts a lifetime"
    Benedict XVI concludes the cycle of reflections on the figure of the bishop of Hippo by emphasising his journey toward knowledge of God, and highlighting his own "personal devotion and gratitude" toward this "passionate seeker of truth" who influenced his life as "priest and theologian".

    05/03/2008 VATICAN
    Pope: Roman primacy is "necessary" in the Church, today as in the past
    Illustrating at the general audience the figure of St Leo the Great, Benedict XVI again asserts the purpose of the primacy of the bishop of Rome and recalls how at the time of the undivided Church he was also recognised by the Eastern bishops.

    11/02/2009 VATICAN
    Faith, hope and charity, a spiritual journey’s start and end, says Pope
    After 20 catecheses devoted to Saint Paul, Benedict XVI in today’s general audience talks again about the great spiritual figures of the Middle Ages. Saint john Climacus and his ‘Ladder of Paradise” show human life’s “climb” towards God.

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