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Ten Commandments expand, not limit, human freedom, Pope says

June 10, 2013

The Ten Commandments expand, rather than limit, human freedom, Pope Francis told a crowd in Milan, Italy, on June 9.

“The word ‘commandment’ isn’t fashionable,” the Pope conceded in his message, which was conveyed by a video link to a crowd in Milan’s Cathedral Square. He remarked that suspicion about authority is understandable, after decades “marked by tyranny, ideologies, mindsets that have been imposed and oppressive, that haven't sought the good of humanity but rather power, success, and profit.”

The Ten Commandments are entirely different, however, the Pope continued, because they were established by “a God who only wants the good of humanity.”

He explained: “The Ten Commandments show us a path to travel and also constitute a sort of 'moral code' for building just societies that are made for men and women. How much inequality there is in the world!”

Far from limiting mankind, then, the Ten Commandments “teach us how to avoid the slavery to which we are reduced by the many idols that we ourselves build,” the Pope said. They provide a set of guidelines by which we can live together honestly, respectful of each other and of creation, “walking toward the true freedom that Christ taught us in the Beatitudes.”

The Pope’s address was delivered to a “Ten Squares for Ten Commandment” rally, organized by the Pontifical Council for New Evangelization for the Year of Faith. The initiative was hosting its 4th event in Milan, having previously organized similar events in the Italian cities of Rome, Naples, and Verona. Future events in the same series are scheduled for Bari, Genoa, Cagliari, Florence, Palermo, Bologna, and Turin.


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  • Posted by: John J Plick - Jun. 10, 2013 6:53 PM ET USA

    I hope his brother Bishops are listening... particularly with regard to the poor, whom they often dysfunctionally empower. Discipline brings humanity to perfection. He who love disciplines... Where there is no discipline there is no love...