Pope: "no sin or crime...can erase us from the mind and heart of God"
#1


[Image: zacchaeusByGiotto.jpg]
By Giotto



From Vatican Insider:


Pope Francis, encouraging ‘the lost sheep’ to return to Jesus, said, “there is no sin or crime of any kind that can erase from the mind or heart of God even one of the children he has created”
Gerard O'connell



“There is no profession or social condition, there is no sin or crime of any kind that can erase from the memory and heart of God even one of his children”, Pope Francis told tens of thousands of pilgrims gathered in St Peter’s Square on Sunday, November 3.

“God remembers, he never forgets any one of those he has created”, Francis emphasized once again, returning to what has been one of his leitmotivs ever since his election as pope: God is a loving Father, one who wants to save, not condemn people.

Speaking from the study window of the papal apartment which he uses for his Sunday encounter with pilgrims, the Argentinean Pope took his cue from this Sunday’s Gospel which was about a man, Zaccheus, who lived in the city of Jericho which Jesus had entered.

He described Zaccheus as  “a lost sheep”, one “who was despised by everyone and ‘excommunicated’ because he was a tax collector –the chief of the tax-collectors and a publican, the friend of the hated Romans, an exploiter and a thief”.  He was not allowed even to come close to Jesus when he visited Jericho because of all this.  Yet this man wanted to see Jesus, he said, but being small in stature he could not see over the crowd and so he climbed a tree so he could see Jesus.

That seemingly ‘ridiculous” gesture expressed “the interior act of the man who wanted to go above the crowd to have contact with Jesus”, the Pope said. Indeed, Zaccheus man did not really know “the profound sense of his gesture, nor did he hope to overcome the distance that separated him from the Lord”, Francis said; “he just resigned himself to seeing him as he passed by”.

Jesus, however, noticed his gesture and stopped at the tree where he was. Then looking up, he told him, “Zaccheus, come down immediately, today I want to stop at your house”.  Pope Francis said that this man “small in stature, rejected by everyone, is like one lost in anonymity, but Jesus calls him”. The Pope noted that this man has a name that is full of allusions because ‘Zaccheus’ means ‘God remembers’.

Vox Wrote:Interesting!

Francis recalled that Jesus went to Zaccehus’ home and that very day ‘joy’ and ‘salvation’ came to that house.

Pope Francis went onto remind everyone that God is a “Father who is always waiting, vigilant and loving, to see reborn in the heart of his son the desire to return home”.  Indeed, he said, “whenever” - as in the case of Zaccheus, “he recognizes that desire, even the simple indication (of that desire), however unconscious, he is immediately at the side of that person, and with his pardon he makes the journey of conversion and return lighter”.

[html]Then, abandoning his prepared text, Francis looked out at the vast crowd of pilgrims in the square below, and said: “I tell you that if you have a great weight on your conscience, if you are ashamed of what you have done, then stop and reflect on this: God has never ceased to remember you!”

He encouraged everyone in such a situation, every “lost sheep”, to follow the example of Zaccheus and ‘climb a tree’ or make some similar gesture ‘however ridiculous’, to come to Jesus “and you will not be disappointed.”

“Jesus is merciful. He always pardons you, so allow yourselves to be looked at by Jesus! Today, he wants to come and stay in your house, that is, in your life”, he told them.

He concluded by inviting everyone listening to allow ourselves “to welcome Jesus with joy, he can transform our hearts of stone into hearts of flesh. He can free us from our egoisms and make our lives a gift of love”. [/html]


His words drew warm applause from the big crowd in St Peter’s Square, an applause that was redoubled when he wished them a good lunch.

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#2
Thanks. I needed this today.
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#3
It's a common claim of some Catholic priests and, now, this Pope that there is no sin that can't be forgiven.

But Jesus' words "will never pass away", and He says [Matt 12:31], "And so I tell you, every kind of sin and slander can be forgiven, but blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven."

No one has the authority on Earth to contradict the Gospel or the Apostles.
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#4
I always thought that "blasphemy against the Spirit" was interpreted as final impenitence.  ??? While we're living, God wants us to accept His grace and repent so that He can forgive us. That way, another soul avails itself of Christ's sacrifice and glorifies God, Heaven rejoices (more glorifying), and the rest of us are reminded of God's goodness and mercy, and hopefully glorify Him, too.

I've also read that if God were to "stop thinking about us," we would cease to exist. So, even the souls in Hell are "still in the mind and heart of God," because He keeps them in existence (and supposedly existence is better than non existence, even for the souls in Hell.).  So that's how I interpret this sort of statement.
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#5
At least the "Once Saved, Always Saved" crowd will be happy with the Popes newest revelation. 
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#6
(11-06-2013, 05:10 PM)SpiderDweeb Wrote: At least the "Once Saved, Always Saved" crowd will be happy with the Popes newest revelation. 

I'm pretty sure he's referring to penitence, not to any idea that everyone is saved.
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#7
(11-05-2013, 05:30 AM)Vox Clamantis Wrote: Pope Francis went onto remind everyone that God is a “Father who is always waiting, vigilant and loving, to see reborn in the heart of his son the desire to return home”.  Indeed, he said, “whenever” - as in the case of Zaccheus, “he recognizes that desire, even the simple indication (of that desire), however unconscious, he is immediately at the side of that person, and with his pardon he makes the journey of conversion and return lighter”.

I like this image, not only for those with a "great weight" on the conscience, but even for "ordinary sinners" in the Church struggling against their faults. Who I am and who I want to be are so different, sometimes there's a temptation to despair of the struggle. But God is not indifferently watching from Heaven. He is "always waiting, vigilant" for a sign of our homesickness, our desire to reach the end, and I imagine He is very eager to help us on our way.  :)
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#8
Good grief will some of the Papal naysayers just shut the Hell up already???


Seriously Pope Francis is right, we are all called to repent of our sins and no sin is greater than God and for Matthew 12:32....I didn't know this was Sola Scriptura hour. Read the Church Fathers!

Quote:Whosoever, &c.
It was their duty to have a knowledge of the Holy Ghost, and they obstinately refused to admit what was clear and manifest. Though they were ignorant of the divinity of Jesus Christ, and might take him to be merely the son of a poor artizan, they could not be ignorant that the expelling of demons, and miraculous healing of all diseases, were the works of the Holy Ghost. If, therefore, they refused to do penance for the insult offered to the Spirit of God, in the person of Christ, they could not hope to escape condign punishment. Chrys. hom. xlii.

— Against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him; i.e. they who for want of sufficient instruction, were invincibly ignorant that Christ was God, might more easily be brought to the true knowledge and faith of Christ, and so receive forgiveness of their sins: but if he shall speak against the Holy Ghost, i.e. against the Spirit of God in Christ, and shall oppose the known truth, by attributing to the devil that doctrine, and those miracles, which evidently were from the Spirit and the hand of God, that sin shall never be forgiven him. But how is this consistent with the Catholic doctrine and belief, that there is no sin any man commits of which he may not obtain pardon in this life? To this I answer, that in what manner soever we expound this place, it is an undoubted point of Christian faith, that there is no sin which our merciful God is not ready to pardon; no sin, for the remission of which, God hath not left a power in his Church, as it is clearly proved by those words, Whose sins you shall forgive, they are forgiven them, &c. S. Chrys. therefore expounds these words, shall not be forgiven them, to imply no more, than shall scarcely, or seldom be forgiven; that is, it is very hard for such sinners to return to God, by a true and sincere repentance and conversion; so that this sentence is like that (Mat. xix. 26.) where Christ seems to call it an impossible thing for a rich man to be saved. In the same place S. Chrys. tells us, that some of those who had blasphemed against the Holy Ghost, repented, and had their sins forgiven them. S. Augustine, by this blasphemy against the Spirit, understands the sin of final impenitence, by which an obstinate sinner refuseth to be converted, and therefore lives and dies hardened in his sins. Wi.

— Nor in the world to come. From these words S. Augustine (De Civ. l. xxi. c. 13.) and S. Gregory (Dial. iv, c. 39.) gather, that some sins may be remitted in the world to come; and consequently that there is a purgatory, or a middle place. Ch. — S. Aug. says these words would not be true, if some sins were not forgiven in the world to come; and S. Gregory says, we are to believe from these words in the existence of the fire of purgatory, to expiate our smaller offences, before the day of judgment. S. Isidore and Ven. Bede say the same. S. Bernard, speaking of heretics, says, they do not believe in purgatory: let them then inquire of our Saviour, what he meant by these words. — It is well known that Ven. Bede, on his death-bed, bestowed several small tokens to the monks who were present, that they might remember to pray for his soul in the holy sacrifice of the mass. A.
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#9
(11-06-2013, 02:13 PM)bsroufek Wrote: It's a common claim of some Catholic priests and, now, this Pope that there is no sin that can't be forgiven.

But Jesus' words "will never pass away", and He says [Matt 12:31], "And so I tell you, every kind of sin and slander can be forgiven, but blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven."

No one has the authority on Earth to contradict the Gospel or the Apostles.

St Thomas teaches the Blasphemy against the Holy Ghost is a sin of malice against the good, in thought, word, or deed that results in a state of mortal sin that persists until death.  He says it is unforgiveable because final impenitence cannot be forgiven after death.

http://www.newadvent.org/summa/3014.htm#article

And yes this teaching is often neglected, even by the pope imo.
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#10
(11-06-2013, 08:09 PM)christulsa123 Wrote:
(11-06-2013, 02:13 PM)bsroufek Wrote: It's a common claim of some Catholic priests and, now, this Pope that there is no sin that can't be forgiven.

But Jesus' words "will never pass away", and He says [Matt 12:31], "And so I tell you, every kind of sin and slander can be forgiven, but blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven."

No one has the authority on Earth to contradict the Gospel or the Apostles.

St Thomas teaches the Blasphemy against the Holy Ghost is a sin of malice against the good, in thought, word, or deed that results in a state of mortal sin that persists until death.  He says it is unforgiveable because final impenitence cannot be forgiven after death.

http://www.newadvent.org/summa/3014.htm#article

And yes this teaching is often neglected, even by the pope imo.

Exactly.  While I usually shiver when preparing to read some statement or speech from our Hippie Pope, as he has been called, he said absolutely nothing unorthodox here.
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