During the homily of Friday’s morning Mass, Pope Francis stated that not only is gossip criminal, but the Pontiff also equated passing judgment on another to a “Christian murder” according to Vatican News.
While holding Mass at the Domus Sanctae Marthae, which is adjacent to St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City, Pope Francis interpreted the words of Jesus Christ in today’s Holy Gospel according to St. Luke 6:39-42.
Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?
Pope Francis discussed how Jesus intermingled the terms hypocrite and judgment. The Holy Father went on to say that it was John the Apostle who likened anyone who harbors that type of hatred, to a murderer that walks in darkness. He noted that these are not his words, but that of the Lord.
Those who live judging their neighbor, speaking ill of their neighbor, are hypocrites, because they lack the strength and the courage to look to their own shortcomings. The Lord does not waste many words on this concept. Further on he says that he who has hatred in his heart for his brother is a murderer. In his first letter, John the Apostle also says it clearly: anyone who has hatred for his brother is a murderer, he walks in darkness. He who judges his brother walks in darkness.
A Christian murderer… It’s not me saying this. It’s the Lord. And there is no place for nuances. If you speak ill of your brother, you kill your brother. And every time we do this, we are imitating that gesture of Caine, the first murderer in history.
The Pope then warned that gossip is not innocent and is criminal in nature.
Gossip always has a criminal side to it. There is no such thing as innocent gossip. The tongue is to be used to praise God, but when we use our tongue to speak ill of our brother or sister, we are using it to kill God, the image of God in our brother. Some may say that there are persons who deserve being gossiped about. But it is not so.
It has been six months since the election of Pope Francis, whose popularity is rising. Catholics and others worldwide revere his smile, words, personality, goodwill and actions.
Gossip is hurtful and fueled by envy, one of the seven deadly sins. Mothers everywhere have always said, “If you have nothing nice to say, then say nothing.”
Deirdre Haggerty, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. No part of this article may be reproduced without prior written permission and consent from the author or Clarity Digital Group LLC, DBA Examiner.com.