10/15/2013, 00.00
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Pope: even today, and even among Christians, there are idolaters and hypocrites

Those who worship the creatures rather than the Creator, who are "egotistical of their own thoughts, the omnipotent thought of what I think is true," and those who stop at appearances, they are the " vain ", the " careerists " , the " ambitious " .

Vatican City ( AsiaNews) - Even today and even among Christians there are idolaters - who are "egotistical of their own thoughts, the omnipotent thought of what I think is true," and the hypocrites who are " vain", "careerists", "ambitious" .

These are the "vices" of which Pope Francis spoke during Mass this morning at Casa Santa Marta.  To combat them we must put into practice the commandment of love of God and love of neighbor.

As Vatican Radio reported Francis was commenting on the words of St. Paul against those who bowed down to reptiles, birds, quadrupeds.  He spoke of the sin of idolatry, of people who - as the Apostle put it - " despite knowing God, did not glorify nor thank him as God" , preferring to worship the " creature rather than the Creator. " It is an idolatry that "stifles the truth of faith, " which reveals the righteousness of God". " But since we all need to worship - because we have the stamp of God within us - when we do not worship God , we worship creatures . And this is the passage from faith to idolatry. They, idolaters, have no excuse: even though they know God , they glorify nor thank him not as God. And what is the path of the idolater ? It clearly says: they became vain in their reasoning, and their senseless minds were darkened..' The egoism of their own thought , the all-powerful thought that leads us to believe that what I think is true : I think the truth , I make the truth with my thoughts ... " .

And if today we no longer love statues , idolatry and has found other ways: "Even today, there are many idols and idolaters, even today there are many , many who think they are wise . But even among us, among Christians , eh I do not speak of them , I respect them, those who are not Christians . But among ourselves - let's talk about our family - some believe themselves wise , they know everything ... And they become fools, and swap the glory of the incorruptible God with an image : their own ego , ideas , comfort ... Today, all of us - I go ahead , eh! It's not just a thing of the past - even today the way there are idols,  a step ahead ... all of us we have some idol hidden inside . Let us ask ourselves before God : what is my idol hidden ? What takes the place of the Lord. "

If St. Paul describes idolators as fools, in the Gospel of the day Jesus does the same with teh hypocrites, personified in the Pharisee who is scandalized because the Master did not wash before sitting at the table as was customary. " Oh you Pharisees!" Jesus says "Although you cleanse the outside of the cup and the dish, inside you are filled with plunder and evil". Then he adds "But as to what is within, give alms, and behold, everything will be clean for you". "Jesus advises: do not stop at appearances, go right to the truth. The plate is flat, but what is more important is what is inside the dish: the meal. But if you're vain, if you are a careerist , if you are ambitious , if you are a person who is always boasting about himself or who likes to boast, because you think you're perfect, a little almsgiving will heal your hypocrisy. This is the path of the Lord: loving God, worshiping God above all things means loving our neighbor. It is so simple, but so difficult ! This can only be done with grace. Let us ask for this favour".


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