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Pope Francis: ‘If you can’t forgive, you are not a Christian’

In a homily the Pope says priests who struggle to be merciful should avoid hearing Confessions

Pope Francis stressed the importance of forgiveness in his homily this morning, saying that “if you can’t forgive, you are not a Christian".

Francis said: “You may be a good man, a good woman … but you are not doing what our Lord did. What’s more, if you can’t forgive, you cannot receive the peace of the Lord."

At a Mass at the Santa Marta residence the Pope said forgiveness should not just be the words one says in the Our Father.

“We are trying to ‘convince’ God that we’re good, that we’re good by forgiving: in reverse. [It’s just] words, right? As that beautiful song went: ‘Words, words, words,’ wasn’t it? I think it was [the Italian singer] Mina who sung it. Words! Forgive one another! Just as the Lord has forgiven us, you do likewise."

Francis also said priests who “can’t manage to be merciful" should stop themselves from hearing Confessions.

The Pope said: “If you are a priest and you can’t manage to be merciful, tell your bishop who will give you a job in administration but please don’t go into the confessional box! A priest who is not merciful does a lot of harm in the confessional box! He beats people."

He also advised against priests hearing Confessions when they were very stressed. “Before going to hear Confessions, go to your doctor who will give you some pills to make you less stressed! But show mercy! And also show mercy among ourselves."

Francis reiterated his condemnation of arms manufacturers, saying their weapons “eventually become bathed in the blood of so many innocent people". The Pope said: “Peace saves us, peace makes you live, it makes you grow: war annihilates you, it drags you down."

In the past Pope Francis has said Confession should not be “torture". “Everyone should leave the confessional with joy in his heart, his face beaming with hope," he told priests in March.



  1. Eileen Cleur Reply

    Pople are going around saying Pope,Bishop’s, Priest’s, Nun’s and we Ronan Catholic s are all Satin’s .they come all the time saying to change throw out our Lady’s statue and rosary we are living in sin by not knowing the truth . How should we react to this

  2. Jimson Nzaramba. Reply

    The holy Father,pope Francis,Is a living saint,though theologically is not agreeable.but this is according to me the way he does his things and preaching the modern gospel.He does what he preaches,and he is surely the true Sheppard of our times. Sincerely speaking,some of the faith leaders,you can put in place where you belong,just give sweet sermons,and preach good words,but leaving them behind..what a bitty!! I myself inclusive.But what is the cause of all this? No doubt the greed of material world. We are no longer serving the living God but materials.And the challenge is that,we forget that,things for the world just varnish in the air,yet the lasting riches are there where we are yearning to reach.I kindly add my little voice to the voice of the pontiff,to serve the living God,and use the worldly materials for the purpose,but not worshiping it. why should we fight for them,yet among us no one knows how they became to be,only our loving God How is the creator of all. Let us now revisit our conscious and ask the lord always to guide us in all what we are doing.It is a challenge to all of us,instead of practicing mercy,we put hate on the fore front.someone talking ill about another without no good reason.Just because you are known and people love you for what you are to them.Hope you have seen this many times.It is really a pity,that pope Francis opened doors for mercy,but till now,acts of hate,backbiting,tarnishing other people’s names are continuing,to multiplying now and again.Another disease which is now eating up us,is the way we base judgement on the hear say,without going on the ground and find out what is taking place,whether is true or not.let us not be mislead with people who only look for their gains.Be merciful as our Father in heaven is merciful,shouldn’t on come out of our sayings,but be practiced and seen by others.Let us be the leaving examples to others,but not a stumbling block to them. It is love and mercy which terminates evil and hate,hate promotes hate, mercy and love takes away hate and replaces mercy and love .So help us God.Amen.

  3. Sunny Foo Reply

    Islam never ask for forgiveness! You pay with your life when you kill someone,that’s justice!

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