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Pope Francis: A true pastor does good deeds but also listens

2015-06-25

During his Thursday morning homily at Casa Santa Marta, Pope Francis spoke about why listening is crucial to being a good pastor. He said it wasn't enough to do good things and speak. Leaders must first listen and then take action.

POPE FRANCIS
"One who knows how to listen and takes action on what he’s heard, with the strength of the word of another, not his own: That is balance. Even though he is a humble person, that does not seem important - but how many of these great ones are there in the Church! How many great bishops,  how many great priests, how many great faithful who listen and do from listening!”

Pope Francis added that the start of speaking and taking action is listening. Those who do that base their work "on the rock of Jesus Christ.”

SUMMARY OF THE POPE'S HOMILY
(Source: Vatican Radio)
They talk, they do, but another attitude is lacking: that is the basis, which is the very foundation of speaking, of doing. They lack the ability to listen.

But, the pope said,  "the combination of speaking-doing is not enough ... " and can often be deceptive.  What Jesus expects of us instead, he said, is to "listen and do – to put into practice:” 'Everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice,’ Jesus said, ‘is like a wise man who built his house upon a rock.'

"When Jesus warns people to beware of 'false prophets', he says: 'By their fruits ye shall know them'. And here, by their attitude: so many words, they speak, they do wonders, do great things but they do not have an open heart to hear the Word of God; they are afraid of the silence of the word of God and these are the 'pseudo Christians', the 'pseudo pastors '. It's true, they do good things, it is true, but they lack the rock.”

These are the  "pseudo pastors,” the "worldly pastors…or Christians also, who talk too much,” the Pope added.  "They are afraid of silence;  maybe they do too much.” And, the Pope insisted,  they are not capable of embracing what they’ve heard – [they like the sound of their own voices] - and this does not come from God.


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