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Less gossip in the parish

· General Audience on the unity of the Church ·

When one speaks of “sins against the unity” of the Church, not only the great schisms should be considered but also parishes. Regrettably, rather than being “places of sharing and communion”, parishes are often “sadly marred by envy, jealousy, antipathy”. 

At the General Audience on Wednesday, 27 August, in St Peter’s Square, Pope Francis called these “parochial sins” and admonished that division in a Christian community is one of the gravest sins, as it is the work of the devil.

In resuming the cycle of Catecheses dedicated to the Church, the Pontiff paused in particular on unity and holiness. And he invited the faithful gathered in St Peter's Square to seek “forgiveness for all the times in which we have caused division or misunderstanding within our communities”, and to ask “the Lord for the grace not to speak ill, not to criticize, not to gossip, to love everyone”. In this regard Francis recalled an Argentinian woman who died after a life spent working in a parish, and who is remembered mostly for having never spoken ill of others. “A woman like this”, he said, “could be canonized tomorrow!”.

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St. Peter’s Square

Nov. 14, 2018

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