(Vatican Radio) The Christian must overcome the temptation to "interfere in the lives
of others," was the exhortation of Pope Francis at Mass this morning at the Casa Santa
Marta. The Pope also stressed that talk and envy do so much harm to the Christian
"What is it to you?" Pope Francis begin his homily referring to
a question Jesus posed to Peter when he had meddled in the life of the disciple John,
"whom Jesus loved." Peter, the Pope pointed out, had "a dialogue of love" with the
Lord, but then the dialogue "is diverted to another track," and he also suffers from
a temptation: "to interfere in the lives of others." How do you say "vulgar," said
the Pope, Peter becomes "nosy". Focus is therefore on two modes of this mix in the
lives of others. First, the "comparison", "to compare oneself with others." When
there is this comparison, Pope Francis said, "we end up in bitterness and even envy,
but envy rusts the Christian community, "it brings much hurt," the "devil wants that."
The second mode of this temptation, he added, is gossip. It begins "in an educated
way," but then we end up “feeling bad”.
"We all chat in Church! As Christians
we chat! The chatter is hurtful? We hurt one another. It is as if we want to put each
other down.: instead of growing one makes the other feel small while I feel great.
That will not do! It seems nice to chat ... I do not know why, but it looks nice.
Like sweet of honey, right? You take one and then another, and another, and another,
and in the end you have a stomach ache. And why ? The chatter is like that eh? It
is 'sweet at first and it ruins you, it ruins your soul! Rumours are destructive in
the Church, they are destructive ... It’s 'a little' like the spirit of Cain who killed
his brother, his tongue; it kills his brother! "
On this road, the Holy Father
said, "we become Christians of good manners and bad habits." But how do we do this
? Normally, Pope Francis noted, "we do three things":
"We supply misinformation:
we tell only half that suits us and not the other half, the other half we do not say
because it is not convenient for us. You smile at that ... Is that true or not? Did
you see that thing? It goes on. The second is defamation: When a person truly has
a flaw, it is big, they tell it, 'like a journalist' ... And the character of this
person is ruined. And the third is the slander of saying things that are not true.
It is like killing ones brother! All three - disinformation, defamation and slander
- are sins! This is sin! It is to slap Jesus in the person of his children, his brothers.
That is why Jesus does with us what he did with Peter when he says: "What
is it to you? Follow me, "The Lord in this instance" points the way ":
kind of talk will not do you any good, because it will just bring to the Church a
spirit of destruction. Follow me! '. These are the beautiful words of Jesus, it is
so clear, that he has so much love for us. As if to say: 'Don’t have fantasies, believing
that salvation is in the comparisons with others or in gossip. Salvation is to go
behind me '. Following Jesus! Today we ask the Lord Jesus to give us this grace not
to ever get involved in the lives of others, not to become Christians of good manners
and bad habits, it is to follow Jesus, to walk behind Jesus on his way. And this is
During his homily, Pope Francis also recalled an episode from the
life of St. Therese who wondered why Jesus gave so much to one and not to another.
The older sister then took a thimble and a glass and filled them with water and then
asked Therese which of the two was more full. "But both are full," said the future
saint. Jesus, the Pope said, does this with us", "he does not care if you're big,
you're or small." What interests him is "if you are filled with the love of Jesus."
Listen to Lydia O'Kane's report