2013-05-17 17:08:41

The problem is not with being a sinner, but with being humble and repenting, says Pope

17 May, 2013 - The fact that we all are sinners is not the problem. The real problem is not allowing ourselves to be transformed by the love of Christ. This was the gist of the homily of Pope Francis at Mass Friday morning in the chapel of the Casa Santa Marta residence in the Vatican. He was reflecting on the relationship between Jesus and Peter, starting from the day’s Gospel reading where the Risen Christ asks Peter three time if he loved Him. On an earlier occasion Jesus rebuked Peter with, “Get behind me Satan,” which the disciple humble accepted. Pope Francis noted that Peter often thought himself great, especially when he took up his sword to defend his Master in Gethsemane; but soon denying him three times for which he wept bitterly. The Pope explained how Peter matured in love in his encounter with Jesus. “This great man, Peter,” the Holy Father said, “is a sinner, but the Lord makes him feel, and he makes us feel too, that we are all sinners.” “The problem,” he explained, “is not that we are sinners: the problem is not repenting of sin, not being ashamed of what we have done. “Peter was a sinner, but not corrupt,” the Pope said, adding “all are sinners, but corrupt – no!” In this regard Pope Francis recalled the episode of a good parish priest, he knew, who worked well. On being appointed bishop he was ashamed because he did not feel worthy and was spiritually tormented. He spoke about it to his confessor who told him not to worry. “If after everything Peter did, they still made him Pope, you go right ahead!” the confessor said. The Pope said the Lord makes us mature through our many encounters with him when we recognize him, even with our weaknesses and our sins.

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