Catholic World News

Never compromise on the truth, Pope insists

August 29, 2012

“The truth is the truth and there is no compromise,” Pope Benedict XVI told his weekly public audience on August 29, the feast of the martyrdom of St. John the Baptist.

St. John the Baptist died because he spoke the truth plainly, the Pope remarked. “For the love of truth, he did not stoop to compromises with the powerful and was not afraid to use strong words with those who had lost the path of God.”

After asking how the Baptist found the courage to speak so boldly, the Pope said: “The answer is simple: from his relationship with God—from prayer.”

The Pontiff went on to observe that the public life of John the Baptist testified to his relationship with God in prayer. He gained attention by summoning people to repentance. But his call went beyond that summons. “He had the deep humility to reveal in Jesus the true Messenger of God, stepping aside so that Christ can grow.”

That humility and dedication testifies to an intense life of prayer, which gave the Baptist the strength he needed, the Pope said. He told the crowd that had gathered in the courtyard of his summer residence:

Prayer is not a waste of time, it does not rob much space from our activities, not even apostolic activities, it does the exact opposite: only if we are able to have a life of faithful, constant, confident prayer will God Himself give us the strength and capacity to live in a happy and peaceful way, to overcome difficulties and to bear witness with courage.

Pope Benedict exhorted his audience to imitate St. John the Baptist by “the daily ‘martyrdom’ of fidelity to the Gospel, that is, the courage to let Christ grow in us and direct our thinking and our actions.’

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  • Posted by: koinonia - Aug. 31, 2012 9:44 PM ET USA

    Tremendous. This week has been one of profundity in the comments of the Holy Father and of Cardinal Burke. Humility, martyrdom, courage and "strong words" can indeed serve truth. In prayerful union with Christ, charity in the service of truth can be exercised for the good of souls. United in prayerful participation to the Church and in her sacraments, the faithful can be moved by grace to live "the daily 'martyrdom' of fidelity to the let Christ grow in us and direct our thinking.."

  • Posted by: lauriem5377 - Aug. 29, 2012 8:05 PM ET USA

    God bless our Holy Father! He doesn't seem to have any problem with making 'matters of faith' clear. Perhaps we could avoid 'middle management' and all report directly to him.