For everyone who has any kind of authority over others, the one sin "at your fingertips" is the sin of corruption, Catholic News Service reported Pope Francis as saying.
And "the martyrs of corruption" -- those who end up paying the price for the politicians, financiers and church officials who abuse their power -- are the poor and the marginalized, he said during his early morning Mass June 16. "Corrupt politicians, corrupt businessmen, and corrupt church leaders -- they're everywhere," he said.
"And we have to tell the truth: Corruption is precisely the sin that is at your fingertips. We are all tempted by corruption. It is a sin that is close at hand" and easy to succumb to, he said, "because when one has authority, one feels powerful, one feels almost like God." The corrupt live a life enveloped in a sense of security, with a sense of "well-being, money, and then power, vanity and pride," he said.
But "who pays the price" of such a life of corruption? the pope asked. "The poor pay it. … Corruption is paid for by the poor, the materially poor, the spiritually poor."
Pope Francis said service is the only antidote to a life of corruption or the temptation of corruption.