During his daily morning Mass at the Vatican, Pope Francis asked Christians to condemn the corrupt, but at the same time, to pray so they may have a change of heart.
"When we read in the newspapers how this person is corrupt, and also this other one, who committed a corrupt act. Or that illegal profits go this way and so on. And so many things, also of some prelates... As Christians, our duty is to pray for them and ask the Lord to give them the grace of penance, so that they don't die with a corrupt heart, because otherwise the dogs of hell will take their blood.”
Pope Francis said there is a path of redemption for corrupt politicians, businessmen and prelates: It includes asking for forgiveness and giving back what they've taken.
EXCERPT OF THE POPE'S HOMILY
Source: Vatican Radio
This is the definition of corruption, the Pope insisted, it’s a commodity that we buy and sell. Recalling yesterday’s homily in which he identified three areas of corruption – in politics, in business and in the Church – he said all three hurt the poor who always pay the price for the other’s gain. To all of these people, the Pope notes, God says clearly that he will bring disaster on them and their families. Corruption, he said irritates God and scandalises people because it exploits, enslaves, even kills the vulnerable, but those who commit this crime are only focused on money and power.
The corrupt, the Pope said, are traitors who steal and kill, who exploit the innocent, but they do it at a distance with kid gloves on so that they do not have to get their hands dirty. These people, he said, are cursed by God, but just as Ahab tore his clothes and fasted and humbled himself before the Lord, so the corrupt must repent and make amends for what they have done. Our duty as Christians, the Pope concluded, is to ask forgiveness from God for these people we read about in the papers, to pray for their conversion of heart and for the grace that we may never become corrupt ourselves.