Enter the darkness, offer mercy


Francis Mercy


In a new book, The Name of God is MercyPope Francis describes — via an extended interview with the Italian journalist, Andrea Tornielli — the role of the modern Catholic community: follow Jesus’ example closely and seek to “enter the darkness” in which many of today’s people live. 

The book contains Francis’ understanding of mercy and forgiveness and what these things mean to him personally and to the Church.

“We must go back to the Gospel,” he says.

Francis Mery Book (1-'16)

“We need to enter the darkness, the night in which so many of our brothers live. We need to be able to make contact with them and let them feel our closeness (and God’s mercy), without letting ourselves be wrapped up in that darkness and influenced by it.”

Francis talks about those who tie up heavy burdens and lay them on other men’s shoulders, but who are unwilling to move so much as a finger. These hypocrites love the place of honor and want to be called master, he adds.

“This conduct comes when a person loses the sense of awe for salvation that has been granted to him or her.”

Regarding those who rely on clericalism and moral rigidity, opposites to God’s mercy, Francis notes that he has thought that a few very rigid people would do well to slip a little, so that they could remember that they are sinners and thus meet Jesus.
Butch Ekstrom
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