The Pope met with some of the priests, that during the Jubilee, will travel the world to forgive the gravest sins. They are the Missionaries of Mercy.
First, he recommended not to forget that they too are sinners. He wants them to help people who come to the confessional to feel welcome. In fact, he recalled a confession that changed his life on September 21, 1953. This was the moment he decided to become a priest.
"What did the priest say to me? I do not remember. I only remember that he smiled and then I do not know what happened. It was like having a father figure.”
He said that it is important to welcome sinners not only with words, but with gestures, to also help them overcome the shame.
"Shame is a feeling which affects the personal life and the confessor requires an attitude of respect and encouragement. Often shame makes you mute.”
Pope Francis asked that the confession does not turn into an interrogation. He said it is not good to ask for unnecessary details that might humiliate the penitent.
"Some months ago I spoke with a wise cardinal of the Roman Curia on the questions that some priests ask in confession, he said: When it starts ... when I see a person who wants to drive it out and realize what they are trying to say to me, I'll acknowledge and say, 'I get it, stay calm and go'. And this is a father.”
Pope Francis invited them to follow the examples of Saint Leopold and Padre Pio, two well regarded Capuchin friars and confessors. He wished them luck and handed out advice, especially to some ...
"And those that go to the Arctic should covered up, huh?"