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By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

3/7/2014 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Pope talks about duties of the clergy.

During the annual Lenten meeting with the pastors of Rome, Pope Francis told them that he had stolen a crucifix from a Buenos Aires priest in the 1990's.

Pope Francis held his annual Lenten meeting with the pastors of Rome on March 6.

Pope Francis held his annual Lenten meeting with the pastors of Rome on March 6.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

3/7/2014 (1 year ago)

Published in Living Faith

Keywords: Pope Francis, confession, crucifix


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Pope Francis told the assembled clergymen that when he visited the deceased he noticed that there were no flowers at all for the man. "I thought, this man forgave the sins of all the clergy of Buenos Aires, including mine, and not a single flower. So I went out to the florist's."

While he was arranging the flowers and preparing the coffin he saw the crucifix attached to the priest's rosary. "I looked at the rosary in his hand. Immediately that robber that is in each of us came out and while I arranged the flowers, I picked up the cross of the rosary and with a little effort, I pulled it off. I looked at him and said, 'Give me half of your mercy.'"

The Pope carried that crucifix in his breast pocket until he was elected to the Papacy in early 2013. Now he carries it in cloth pouch under his cassock.

This confession was only a small part of the meeting, and was used to illustrate the Pope's larger points.

The Pope told the assembled that their ministry of mercy is needed, and that they should go out to the people where they are and work outside their church. The act of penance was stressed, especially in regards to those who have left the church.

Another key point for the Pope was confession, he urged his pastors to be neither extremely lax or strict with their flock, and instead put themselves in the mindset of Jesus, who was moved by the spiritual and physical pain and toils of the people. "The rigorist, in fact, nails the person to the law as understood in a cold and rigid way; the indulgent, on the other hand, only appears merciful, but does not take seriously the problems of that person's conscience, minimizing the sin," he said.

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