Pope Francis: We cannot use Church doctrine 'as we please'
Pontiff stresses humility, fidelity and special service
The term "cherry picking" has been used to describe taking parts of a doctrine that best serves our own interests, and leaving other parts out. Pope Francis has since warned against such a practice, recently speaking about fidelity to Church teaching. The pontiff says this is a fundamental part of belonging to the Church, and that we cannot use Church doctrine "as we please."
"The Christian is not a baptized who receives baptism and then goes on his way. The first fruit of baptism is to make you belong to the Church, the People of God. You cannot understand a Christian without the Church," the pope said.
Fidelity, Pope Francis stressed, was the "second pillar," adding that "fidelity to the Church, fidelity to its teaching; fidelity to the Creed; fidelity to the doctrine, safeguarding this doctrine. Humility and fidelity. Even Paul VI reminded us that we receive the message of the Gospel as a gift and we need to transmit it as a gift, but not as a something of ours: it is a gift that we received.
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"And be faithful in this transmission. Because we have received and we have to gift a Gospel that is not ours, that is Jesus, and we must not - he would say - become masters of the Gospel, masters of the doctrine we have received, to use it as we please," Pope Francis added
Quoting Pope Paul VI, Pope Francis said that it was an "absurd dichotomy" to love Christ without loving the Church.
"The Christian is not a baptized who receives baptism and then goes on his way. The first fruit of baptism is to make you belong to the Church, the People of God. You cannot understand a Christian without the Church.
"This is why the great Paul VI said that it is an absurd dichotomy to love Christ without the Church, to listen to Christ but not the Church, to be with Christ at the margins of the Church. It's not possible. It is an absurd dichotomy. We receive the Gospel message in the Church and we carry out our holiness in the Church, our path in the Church. The other is a fantasy, or, as he said, an absurd dichotomy."
Pope Francis calls for your 'prayer and action'...
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Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for March 2014
Respect for Women: That all cultures may respect the rights and dignity of women.
Vocations: That many young people may accept the Lord’s invitation to consecrate their lives to proclaiming the Gospel.
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