Pope Francis says hypocrisy undermines Church’s credibility

Pope Francis looks on as he leads a solemn mass at Saint Paul's Basilica in Rome April 14, 2013. REUTERS/Max Rossi
Pope Francis looks on as he leads a solemn mass at Saint Paul’s Basilica in Rome April 14, 2013. REUTERS/Max Rossi

Pope Francis on Sunday said clergy and Christians must not betray the word of God with their actions or they undermine the credibility of the church.

Francis, elected a month ago, inherited a Church struggling to restore credibility after a series of scandals, including the sexual abuse of children by priests.

The pope spoke at the Papal Basilica of St. Paul’s Outside the Walls, where he celebrated Mass. He also greeted pilgrims and local Church members earlier in St. Peter’s square.

“Inconsistency on the part of pastors and the faithful between what they say and what they do, between word and manner of life, is undermining the Church’s credibility,” the pontiff said in his homily.

“Those who listen to us and observe us must be able to see in our actions what they hear from our lips, and so give glory to God!”

In his first major decision on Saturday, Francis set up an advisory board of cardinals to help him govern the Church and reform its troubled central administration, which was riddled by infighting and alleged corruption under Pope Benedict.

Benedict left a secret report for Francis on the problems in the administration, known as the Curia, which came to light when sensitive documents were stolen from the pope’s desk and leaked by his butler in what became known as the “Vatileaks” scandal.

Since his election as the first non-European pope in nearly 1,300 years, Francis has been laying out a clear moral path for the 1.2-billion-member Church. He has favored humility and simplicity over pomp and grandeur.

Francis has preferred to live in simple quarters in the Vatican instead of moving into the regal papal apartments, and he has said he wants “a poor Church, and for the poor”.

In the Sunday afternoon service at St. Paul’s, Francis said that each Christian can be a saint, which he defined as “middle class holiness”.

“There are the saints of every day, the ‘hidden’ saints, a sort of ‘middle class of holiness’… to which we can all belong.”

The pope celebrated Mass together with the Benedictine monks to whom the basilica and the adjoining monastery are entrusted. St. Paul’s is one of Rome’s four major basilicas and the second largest after St. Peter’s.

 



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Federal mediator joins Met Opera labor talks as…

Unions representing the orchestra and chorus of the Met Opera agreed to have a federal mediator join labor talks on Thursday as a threatened lockout loomed.

Local

Winning $7 million New York lottery ticket sold…

The only $7 million winning New York Lottery ticket for Monday's Cash4Life drawing was sold at a Queens 7-Eleven, officials said on Tuesday.

Local

Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.

International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

Movies

Review: 'Guardians of the Galaxy' is a refreshingly…

Marvel is sitting so high on a cash mountain that it's now thrown $170 million at the relatively obscure and very silly title "Guardians of the Galaxy."

Movies

Review: 'Get on Up' is a war between…

James Brown finally gets his own boring biopic with "Get on Up," but the Godfather of Soul puts up a good fight against the usual cliches.

Movies

Review: 'Child of God' finds director James Franco…

James Franco's 11th directed feature is a noble but sloppy adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's "Child of God," about a feral mountain man (Scott Haze).

Movies

Review: Alex Gibney's Fela Kuti doc 'Finding Fela'…

Prolific documentarian Alex Gibney takes on Afrobeat god Fela Kuti in "Finding Fela," but fails to capture his unique essence.

MLB

Yankees land Stephen Drew, Martin Prado at trade…

Yankees land Stephen Drew, Martin Prado at trade deadline

College

Playing the Field: Valentine's Day coupling edition

  It’s Valentine’s Day, a day created by Hallmark to make couples spend loads and loads of money on candy, flowers and gourmet dinners. Or…

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

Career

What do you wear to a career fair?…

Getting that gig starts with presenting the most polished and memorable version of yourself, so refer to our expert fashion advice.

Style

Editors pick: Margiela's finger armor ring

These cool rings from Maison Martin Margiela are designed to overlap over the finger, covering each joint like armor.

Style

Givenchy champions diversity

Riccardo Tisci's uses a variety of ethnically diverse ladies for his spring campaign including Erykah Badu.

Wellbeing

Don't settle for the hotel fitness center with…

Travelers who want to skip the hotel fitness center in favor of local gyms that may offer better equipment, classes and amenities can turn to…