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Pope calls on priests to show apostolic zeal, denounce evil

June 23, 2017

In his June 22 weekday Mass homily at Domus Sanctae Marthae, Pope Francis outlined the traits of a priest who is a true shepherd.

The true shepherd loves his flock and is able to say, “‘I feel for you all a kind of divine jealousy.”

The true shepherd, the Pope continued, has “apostolic zeal: he cannot be a true shepherd without this fire.” The shepherd recognizes that “the serpent, the father of lies, is a seducer. He is a seducer trying to turn [Christians] away from fidelity.”

In addition, the true shepherd is able to denounce evil concretely, “by name and surname”:

An apostle cannot be naive: ‘Ah, it’s all right, let’s go ahead, eh? It’s all right ... Let’s party, everyone ... everything is possible ...’ because there is the fidelity to the only groom, to Jesus Christ, to be defended. And he knows how to condemn it: that concreteness, to say ‘no,’ like the parents say to the baby when he starts to clap and goes to the electric socket to put his fingers in: ‘No, no! It’s dangerous!’

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  • Posted by: [email protected] - Jun. 25, 2017 2:14 PM ET USA

    Pope needs to make up his mind on what is good and evil. There is evil rampant in the San Diego diocese. If a priest speaks up he is chastised. The bishop there is misleading the flock. There is much confusion there and it is spread in like a cancer. God help us. St. Michael protect us.

  • Posted by: james-w-anderson8230 - Jun. 24, 2017 12:42 AM ET USA

    Speaking of "seducers" what should we call church leaders that lead people living in adultery to believe that they can receive communion while continuing in their adultery?

  • Posted by: tcflanagan - Jun. 23, 2017 9:42 PM ET USA

    I pray he starts following his own advice!

  • Posted by: robertbovenzijr5369 - Jun. 23, 2017 2:54 PM ET USA

    Our Holy Father speaks the TRUTH in LOVE. May all of our Shepherds, and all evangelizers and present-day prophets be zealous in both LOVING all people, especially God's holy people and DENOUNCING evil.