Pope Francis lives up to the name he selected for himself after St. Francis of Assisi. Following his simple lifestyle, Pope Francis chose to live in an ordinary hotel rather than living in the official papal quarters. He wears simple priest robes, and drives a gifted car which is 20 years old.
Pope Francis speaks about life, and the love that keeps it alive. He speaks about equality that would some day bring peace to the hearts of the victims of injustice. He speaks about homosexuality, and that a person should not be judged at all, but be considered only as a person, as a human being. He speaks of capitalism and how it starts a neverending era of poverty. He speaks about science, and its importance in understanding the evolution of the earth, and clarifies that religion is not against the theories of evolution, but it supports any new fact that helps understand the beginning of life and how all of it is eventually related to God the creator. He doesn't believe in a Catholic God, because there is none! He believes in God the creator, who is the same for every living being on earth.
His words are not just for Christians, or for the religious, but for the whole of humanity; for atheists, for non-believers, for children, and for the elderly, for rich, and for the poor, for scientists, and economists. This man who never wished to be the Pope, is all set to bring a humongous change in the thinking of young and old minds alike. With God as his purpose of living, his speech is filled with the power to inspire, motivate and convince people to deeply think about how this sadness and sorrow around us can be lessened, and how the less fortunate can enjoy every bit of the bountiful gifts of the earth that are meant to be equally distributed amongst everyone.
Quotes on life and consciousness
Life is a journey. When we stop, things don't go right.
Grace is not part of consciousness; it is the amount of light in our souls, not knowledge nor reason.
Although the life of a person is a land full of thorns and weeds, there is always a space in which the good seed can grow. You have to trust God.
The perfect family doesn't exist, nor is there a perfect husband or a perfect wife, and let's not talk about the perfect mother-in-law! It's just us sinners." A healthy family life requires frequent use of three phrases: "May I? Thank you, and I'm sorry" and "never, never, never end the day without making peace.
All life has inestimable value even the weakest and most vulnerable, the sick, the old, the unborn and the poor, are masterpieces of God's creation, made in his own image, destined to live forever, and deserving of the utmost reverence and respect.
Religion has the right to express its opinion in the service of the people, but God in creation has set us free: it is not possible to interfere spiritually in the life of a person.
Sin, also for those who don't have faith, exists when one goes against one's conscience. To listen to and obey it means, in fact, to decide in face of what is perceived as good or evil. And on this decision pivots the goodness or malice of our action.
Journeying is an art because if we're always in a hurry, we get tired and don't arrive at our journey's goal," he said. "If we stop, we don't go forward and we also miss the goal. Journeying is precisely the art of looking toward the horizon, thinking where I want to go but also enduring the fatigue of the journey, which is sometimes difficult. ... There are dark days, even days when we fail, even days when we fall ... but always think of this: Don't be afraid of failures. Don't be afraid of falling. What matters in the art of journeying isn't not falling but not staying down. Get up right away and continue going forward. This is what's beautiful: This is working every day, this is journeying as humans. But also, it's bad walking alone: It's bad and boring. Walking in community, with friends, with those who love us, that helps us. It helps us to arrive precisely at that goal in the journey of life.
Quotes on evolution
When we read about Creation in Genesis, we run the risk of imagining God was a magician, with a magic wand able to do everything. But that is not so...
He created human beings and let them develop according to the internal laws that he gave to each one so they would reach their fulfillment.
God is not a demigod or a magician, but the Creator who brought everything to life," the pope said. "Evolution in nature is not inconsistent with the notion of creation, because evolution requires the creation of beings that evolve.
Quotes on capitalism
Money must serve, not rule! The Pope loves everyone, rich and poor alike, but he is obliged in the name of Christ to remind all that the rich must help, respect and promote the poor. I exhort you to generous solidarity and a return of economics and finance to an ethical approach which favors human beings.
Today in many places we hear a call for greater security. But until exclusion and inequality in society and between people is reversed, it will be impossible to eliminate violence.
The culture of prosperity deadens us; we are thrilled if the market offers us something new to purchase; and in the meantime all those lives stunted for lack of opportunity seem a mere spectacle; they fail to move us.
Almost without being aware of it, we end up being incapable of feeling compassion at the outcry of the poor, weeping for other people's pain, and feeling a need to help them, as though all this were someone else's responsibility and not our own.
Human beings are themselves considered consumer goods to be used and then discarded. We have created a 'disposable' culture which is now spreading. It is no longer simply about exploitation and oppression, but something new.
Today everything comes under the laws of competition and the survival of the fittest, where the powerful feed upon the powerless. As a consequence, masses of people find themselves excluded and marginalized: without work, without possibilities, without any means of escape.
Just as the commandment 'Thou shalt not kill' sets a clear limit in order to safeguard the value of human life, today we also have to say 'thou shalt not' to an economy of exclusion and inequality. Such an economy kills. How can it be that it is not a news item when an elderly homeless person dies of exposure, but it is news when the stock market loses 2 points? This is a case of exclusion.
Human rights are not only violated by terrorism, repression or assassination, but also by unfair economic structures that create huge inequalities.
Quotes on homosexuality
If someone is gay, who searches for the Lord and has goodwill, who am I to judge?
A person once asked me, in a provocative manner, if I approved of homosexuality. I replied with another question: 'Tell me: when God looks at a gay person, does he endorse the existence of this person with love, or reject and condemn this person?' We must always consider the person.
Quotes on love and serving
We must restore hope to young people, help the old, be open to the future, spread love. Be poor among the poor. We need to include the excluded and preach peace.
These two criteria are like the pillars of true love: deeds, and the gift of self.
To love God and neighbor is not something abstract, but profoundly concrete: it means seeing in every person the face of the Lord to be served, to serve him concretely. And you are, dear brothers and sisters, the face of Jesus.
We have observed that, in society and the world in which we live, selfishness has increased more than love for others, and that men of good will must work, each with his own strengths and expertise, to ensure that love for others increases until it is equal and possibly exceeds love for oneself.
I am thinking of what St Ignatius told us...He pointed out two criteria on love. The first: love is expressed more clearly in actions than in words. The second: there is greater love in giving than in receiving.
Every man, every woman who has to take up the service of government, must ask themselves two questions: 'Do I love my people in order to serve them better? Am I humble and do I listen to everybody, to diverse opinions in order to choose the best path?' If you don't ask those questions, your governance will not be good.
Quotes on God
If one has the answers to all the questions-that is the proof that God is not with him. It means that he is a false prophet using religion for himself. The great leaders of the people of God, like Moses, have always left room for doubt.
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.
To say that you can kill in the name of God is blasphemy.
The people of God want pastors, not clergy acting like bureaucrats or government officials.
I believe in God - not in a Catholic God; there is no Catholic God. There is God, and I believe in Jesus Christ, his incarnation. Jesus is my teacher and my pastor, but God, the Father, Abba, is the light and the Creator. This is my Being.
God never gives someone a gift they are not capable of receiving. If he gives us the gift of Christmas, it is because we all have the ability to understand and receive it.
Quotes on self
I do not know what might be the most fitting description.... I am a sinner. This is the most accurate definition. It is not a figure of speech, a literary genre. I am a sinner.
I chose to live [in Santa Marta], in Room 201, because when I took possession of the papal apartment, inside myself I distinctly heard a 'no.' The papal apartment in the Apostolic Palace is not luxurious. It is old, tastefully decorated and large, but not luxurious. But in the end it is like an inverted funnel. It is big and spacious, but the entrance is really tight. People can come only in dribs and drabs, and I cannot live without people. I need to live my life with others.
When I was a seminarian, I was dazzled by a girl I met at an uncle's wedding. I was surprised by her beauty, her intellectual brilliance... and, well, I was bowled over for quite a while.
Where there is no work, there is no dignity.
I like it when someone tells me 'I don't agree.' This is a true collaborator. When they say 'Oh, how great, how great, how great,' that's not useful.
Unfortunately, what is thrown away is not only food and dispensable objects, but often human beings themselves, who are discarded as 'unnecessary.' For example, it is frightful even to think there are children, victims of abortion, who will never see the light of day; children being used as soldiers, abused and killed in armed conflicts; and children being bought and sold in that terrible form of modern slavery which is human trafficking, which is a crime against humanity.
Proselytism is solemn nonsense, it makes no sense. We need to get to know each other, listen to each other and improve our knowledge of the world around us.
It hurts me when I see a priest or nun with the latest model car. You can't do this. A car is necessary to do a lot of work, but, please, choose a more humble one. If you like the fancy one, just think about how many children are dying of hunger in the world.
There is another important point: encountering the poor. If we step outside ourselves we find poverty. Today-it sickens the heart to say so-the discovery of a tramp who has died of the cold is not news. Today what counts as news is, maybe, a scandal. A scandal: ah, that is news! Today, the thought that a great many children do not have food to eat is not news. This is serious, this is serious! We cannot put up with this! Yet that is how things are. We cannot become starched Christians, those over-educated Christians who speak of theological matters as they calmly sip their tea.
It is a well-known fact that current levels of production are sufficient, yet millions of people are still suffering and dying of starvation. This, dear friends is truly scandalous. A way has to be found to enable everyone to benefit from the fruits of the earth, and not simply to close the gap between the affluent and those who must be satisfied with the crumbs falling from the table, but above all to satisfy the demands of justice, fairness and respect for every human being.
Men and women are sacrificed to the idols of profit and consumption: it is the "culture of waste." If you break a computer it is a tragedy, but poverty, the needs, the dramas of so many people end up becoming the norm.
Each of us has a vision of good and of evil. We have to encourage people to move towards what they think is good... Everyone has his own idea of good and evil and must choose to follow the good and fight evil as he conceives them. That would be enough to make the world a better place.
A little bit of mercy makes the world less cold and more just.
Together with a culture of work, there must be a culture of leisure as gratification. To put it another way: people who work must take the time to relax, to be with their families, to enjoy themselves, read, listen to music, play a sport.