Photos of Christians crucified brings tears to Pope Francis' eyes
By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
5/7/2014 (3 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
During a homily at early morning Mass in the chapel of his residence, Pope Francis said he cried when he recently saw images of Christians allegedly killed by crucifixion. A number of news outlets reprinted photographs last month that showed what were described as crucifixions in Syria.
"I cried when I saw in the media" photographs allegedly showing "Christians crucified in a certain non-Christian country," Pope Francis told those at the Mass, according to a report by Vatican Radio.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - "Still today there are people who kill, who persecute in the name of God," Pope Francis said. And still today there are Christians who, like the Apostles, are "happy to be judged worthy of suffering dishonor for Christ's name."
"I cried when I saw in the media" photographs allegedly showing "Christians crucified in a certain non-Christian country", he told those at the Mass, according to a report by Vatican Radio.
Sources that posted the images online said they could not confirm that the bodies hung on crosses died by crucifixion or that they were Christians.
There remain many people who are persecuted for their faith, the Pope says. "In some countries, people go to jail just for having a Bible" while in others "people can't wear a cross or they will be fined. But their hearts are happy."
At the Pope's Mass, the day's reading from the Acts of the Apostles (5:34-42) recounted how members of the Sanhedrin, a religious court, were discussing how to deal with disciples who continued to preach about Jesus. "They had them flogged, ordered them to stop speaking in the name of Jesus, and dismissed them," the Bible says.
The members of the Sanhedrin had authority over the religious lives of the people at the time. Jesus had described them as "weighing people down with oppressive burdens."
Francis noted that they were jealous of Jesus and could not stand that people were following him, Pope Francis said. "They could not tolerate Jesus's meekness, could not tolerate the meekness of the Gospel, [and] could not tolerate love."
Pope Francis said that unlike the authorities on the Sanhedrin, Jesus was not concerned about how many people followed him - "it never entered his head, for example, to take a census" - but rather, "he spoke, he preached, he loved, accompanied and walked with people, meek and humble."
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