06/17/2014, 00.00
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For pope, the corrupt is someone who "steals" and "kills", cursed by God who can forgive if he repents and does penance

Jesus was clear: those who "cause scandal should throw themselves into the sea," the corrupt "scandalise society, scandalise God's people". There is a way out for the corrupt, for corrupt politicians, corrupt businessmen and corrupt clergy: Ask for forgiveness!"

Vatican City (AsiaNews) - The corrupt is someone who "steals" and "kills"; someone who is cursed by God who can forgive if he repents and do "what Zacchaeus said:" 'If I have extorted anything from anyone I shall repay it four times over.'"

This morning, Pope Francis spoke again about corruption during Mass at Domus Sanctae Marthae, focusing on the concept that "The corrupt irritates God and makes God's people sin."

He was inspired again by the story of Naboth, from the first book of Kings, who was killed at the behest of the corrupt King Ahab, who seized his vineyard. As Vatican Radio reported, Francis highlighted the Prophet Elijah who said that Ahab was corrupt and "sold out", as if he "ceased being a person and became a commodity," something to "buy and sell".

"This is the definition: a commodity! What will the Lord do then with the corrupt, whatever their act of corruption? . . . Yesterday we said that there were three types, three groups: the corrupt politician, corrupt businessman and the corrupt churchman. All three hurt the innocent, the poor, because it is the poor who pay the party of the corrupt! They are stuck with the bill. The Lord clearly says what he will do: 'I am bringing evil upon you: I will consume you and will cut off every male belonging to Ahab, whether bond or free, in Israel.'"

"The corrupt irritate God and make God's people sin." Jesus said it clearly: those who "cause scandal should throw themselves into the sea," the corrupt "scandalise society, scandalise God's people".

The Lord says in advance how he will punish the corrupt "because they cause scandal, because they exploit those who not defend themselves, [because they] enslave. [. . .] the birds of the sky will devour [you]." The corrupt "sell out to do evil, but they do not know it: they believe that they are selling out to make more money, more power."

In fact, "things are sold to do evil, to kill." Thus, "when we say: 'This man is a corrupt, this woman is a corrupt . . . Let us take a short break!' 'Do you have proof?' Because, "telling someone that he or she is  corrupt means you are saying that he or she is condemned; it is saying that the Lord will send them away."

"Corrupt people are traitors, but they are much more. The first thing in the definition of someone who is corrupt is that he steals, he kills. The second thing is what do corrupt people deserve? God's curse, because they exploited the innocent, those who cannot defend themselves and they did it with white gloves, from a distance, without getting their hands dirty. The third thing is that there is a way out. A way out for the corrupt? Yes! 'When Ahab heard these words, he tore his garments and put on sackcloth over his bare flesh. He fasted, slept in the sackcloth, and went about subdued' and began to do penance."

This "is the way out for the corrupt, for corrupt politicians, corrupt businessmen and corrupt clergy: Ask for forgiveness!" For "the Lord likes this."

The Lord "forgives, but he forgives when the corrupt" do "what Zacchaeus said: 'If I have extorted anything from anyone I shall repay it four times over.'"

"When we read in the newspapers that this guy is corrupt, that that one is corrupt, that he carried out this corrupt deed, that the kickback went here or there, that some prelates are involved too - as Christians, our duty is to ask forgiveness for them, that the Lord may give them the grace to repent, that they may not die with a corrupt heart . . .".

"Condemn the corrupt, yes!" said the Pope. "Ask for the grace of not becoming corrupt, yes!" and "Pray too for their conversion!"

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