Pope Francis: Loss of the Sense of Sin Leads to ‘Christian Mediocrity’
Losing the sense of sin causes others to pay for our “Christian mediocrity.” This was the central point of Pope Francis’ homily today at Casa Santa Marta.
The Holy Father reflected on the first reading which spoke of David’s sin of adultery with Bathsheba which led to the murder of her husband, Uriah. David, he said, rather than seeing his adultery as a grave sin, sees it as a problem that needs to be resolved.
“This thing can happen to all of us,” he said. “We are all sinners and we are all tempted and temptation is our daily bread. If one of us said: ‘I never had a temptation’, either you’re a cherubim or a bit stupid, no?”
“Struggle is normal in life and the devil is never calm, he wants his victory. But the problem – the most serious problem in this passage – is not so much temptation and the sin against the 9th commandment, but how David behaves. And David here does not speak of sin, he speaks of a problem that he needs to resolve. This is a sign! When the Kingdom of God is lessened, when the Kingdom of God decreases, one of the signs is that the sense of sin is lost.”
The Holy Father went on to say that in praying the Our Father, we pray for God’s kingdom to come, meaning “thy Kingdom grow.” When the sense of sin is lost, so is the sense of the Kingdom of God lost. In its place, he said, “emerges a very powerful anthropological vision, in which ‘I can do anything.’”
“The power of man in place of the glory of God! This is the daily bread. For this [reason] the everyday prayer to God ‘Your kingdom come, your kingdom grow’ [is important], because salvation does not come from our cleverness, our astuteness, in our intelligence in doing business. Salvation comes from the grace of God and from the daily training that we do with this grace in Christian life.”
Referring to Pius XII’s assertion that “the sin of the century is the loss of the sense of sin”, the Pope reflected on Uriah, who represents the innocent victims who suffer as consequence of our sins.
“I must confess, when I see these injustices, this human pride, also when I see the danger that would happen to me, the danger of losing the sense of sin, it does me well to think of the many Uriahs in history, the many Uriahs who even today suffer from our Christian mediocrity, when we lose the sense of sin, when we let the Kingdom of God fall.
Concluding his homily, Pope Francis called on the faithful to take a moment to “pray for ourselves so that the Lord give us always the grace to not lose the sense of sin, so that the Kingdom does not fall from within us.”