Pope’s Quotes: That stubborn Jonah

My favorite quotes from Pope Francis:

On Oct. 8, Pope Francis’ homily was preached from Jonah 3:1-10 and Luke 10: 38-42. The Gospel is the story of Mary and Martha — Martha being the name sake Francis’ residence, Casa Santa Marta. This is an edited transcript of Vatican Radio:

“… prayer produces a miracle even in the ancient city of Niniveh. Jonah, on God’s instructions, had preached the imminent destruction of the city; the city, though, was saved because the inhabitants, believing the prophet, were converted, and from the greatest to the least called upon the divine forgiveness with all their strength.  … But stubborn Jonah [a do-er like Martha, not a pray-er] … He went, he prophesied, but in his heart he said: ‘But they deserve it. They deserve it. They were asking for it!’ He prophesied, but he didn’t pray! He didn’t ask the Lord to forgive them, only to beat them. They are do-ers, those that believe themselves to be just! And in the end, the book of Jonah continues, it is seen that Jonah was a selfish man, when the Lord saved Nineveh through the prayer of the people, Jonah was angry with the Lord: ‘You are always like that,’ Jonah said to God. ‘You always forgive!’”

And so, the Pope concluded, prayer that is only a formula, without heart, as well as pessimism or the desire for justice without forgiveness, are the temptations a Christian must always guard against in order to be able to choose “the better part.”

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