During his homily at Casa Santa Marta, Pope Francis spoke about forgiveness and false hypocrisy. He said our souls are cleaned of sins by "doing good.”
"'Learn to do right!' That is, the path of doing good. 'And how do I do good?' It’s simple! Seek justice, encourage the oppressed, defend the orphan, plead for the widow.”
Pope Francis said that God always forgives generously and that Jesus "preferred sinners a thousand times” to those who fake their holiness.
FULL POPE HOMILY
(Source: Vatican Radio)
"'But how can I convert?' By learning to do right!Conversion. You cannot remove the filth of the heart as you would remove a stain: we go to the dry cleaner and leave cleansed ... This filth is removed by 'doing': taking a different path, a different path from that of evil. 'Learn to do right!', That is, the path of doing good. And how do I do good? It’s simple! 'Seek justice, encourage the oppressed, defend the orphan, plead for the widow.' Remember that in Israel the poorest and most needy were orphans and widows: do justice to them, go there to the wounds of humanity, where there is so much pain ... And by doing so, by doing good, you will cleanse your heart.”
"If you do this, if you take this path to which I invite you - the Lord tells us - 'though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.' It is an exaggeration, the Lord exaggerates: but it is the truth! The Lord gives us the gift of His forgiveness. The Lord forgives generously. 'I forgive you this much, then we'll see about the rest....' No, no! The Lord always forgives everything! Everything! But if you want to be forgiven, you must set out on the path of doing good. This is the gift!'”
"We are all clever and always find a path that is not right, to seem more virtuous than we are: it is the path of hypocrisy. They pretend to convert, but their heart is a lie: they are liars! It 'a lie ... Their heart does not belong to the Lord; their heart belongs to the father of all lies, Satan. And this is fake holiness. Jesus preferred sinners a thousand times to these. Why? Because sinners told the truth about themselves. 'Get away from me, Lord, I am a sinner!' Peter once said. One of those hypocrites never says that! 'Thank you Lord, that I am not a sinner, that I am righteous ... In the second week of Lent we have these three words to think about, to ponder: the invitation to conversion; the gift that the Lord will give us, which is great forgiveness, a great forgiveness; and the trap that is, pretending to convert, while choosing the path of hypocrisy.”