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Papal retreat focused on the dangers of worldliness

Pope Francis and members of the Roman Curia had their Lenten spiritual exercises, or annual retreat, this week, and Catholic News Agency and the Vatican are both reporting today that the theme of Monsignor Angelo De Donatis' reflections was the dangers of worldliness and the temptations of the world. Using the example of a pomegranate, Father De Donatis pointed out that one could use the many seeds within to symbolize the elements of God's creation. When the seeds to not allow God's love to enter, they become obsessed with their own "self-assertion" and eventually cause the whole fruit to explode.

Monsignor De Donatis also reportedly cited the Gospel example of Jesus casting demons out of a man and into a herd of swine. The swine herders were more concerned about the loss of profit from the loss of the pigs than they were about the fact that Jesus had just cast demons out of a man and into the swine. The swine-herders were too concerned about economics and not concerned enough about the human being involved, Father De Donatis is reported to have reflected. The world today is still searching for the "language of Christ" and has failed to discover it, still using "the language of the world."

"Jesus was the best communicator," Monsignor De Donatis is reported to have said, because the poor and the suffering could best identify with him.

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