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Selfishness leads to death, Pope warns on day dedicated to Gospel of Life

Catholic World News - June 17, 2013

“Whenever we want to assert ourselves, when we become wrapped up in our own selfishness and put ourselves in the place of God, we end up spawning death,” Pope Francis said as he celebrated Mass for “Evangelium Vitae Day” at the Vatican on June 17.

Thousands of pro-life activists gathered in St. Peter’s Square for the morning Mass, as the Vatican called attention to the pro-life cause in an observance organized for the Year of Faith. In his homily the Pope reflected on the day’s Scripture readings, relating them to the cause of life.

“Selfishness leads to lies,” the Pope said. “But God cannot be deceived.” He cited the case of King David, whose sin in ordering the death of Uriah was exposed.

However God is merciful, the Pope continued. He explained the action of the Holy Trinity: “God is the Living One, the Merciful One; Jesus brings us the life of God; the Holy Spirit gives and keeps us in our new life as true sons and daughters of God.”

The challenge facing the Church in this Year of Faith, the Pope said, is to bring the world the truth about God’s mercy and his promise. God invites mankind to celebrate life, he said. But too many people “do not accept the ‘Gospel of Life’ but let themselves be led by ideologies and ways of thinking that block life, that do not respect life, because they are dictated by selfishness, self-interest, profit, power and pleasure, and not by love, by concern for the good of others. That path, Pope Francis said, inevitably leads to death.

Later, at his midday Angelus audience, after thanking all the people who had come to Rome from around the world to participate in the Evangelium Vitae Day, the Pope said:

Now, let us turn to the Virgin, entrusting all human life, especially the most fragile, defenseless, and threatened, to her maternal protection.

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