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Pope Francis at Santa Marta: Attacking weakest is work of Satan

In his homily at Casa Santa Marta, Pope Francis wondered what causes a human being to mistreat the weakest. 

POPE FRANCIS
“And today we see it constantly in our schools; the phenomenon of bullying, attacking the weak, because you’re fat or foreign, or because you’re black… Attacking and attacking… Children and young people, too. It wasn’t just Peninnah, Hagar, or the wives of Tobias and Job: even children. This means there is something within us that makes us act aggressively toward the weak.”

To conclude, the pope assured this tendency to go too far with the weakest is the work of Satan and perhaps a relic of original sin. 

EXCERPTS FROM THE POPE'S HOMILY
(Source: Vatican Radio)

“I ask myself: What is within these people? What is it within ourselves that pushes us to mock and mistreat others weaker than ourselves? It is understandable when a person resents someone stronger than them, perhaps as a result of envy… but towards the weak? What makes us do that? It is something habitual, as if I needed to ridicule another person in order to feel confident. As if it were a necessity…”

“And today we see it constantly in our schools; the phenomenon of bullying, attacking the weak, because you’re fat or foreign, or because you’re black… Attacking and attacking… Children and young people, too. It wasn’t just Peninnah, Hagar, or the wives of Tobias and Job: even children. This means there is something within us that makes us act aggressively toward the weak. I believe it is a consequence of original sin.”

“And so, as when we already have a good desire to do a good act, like an act of charity, we say ‘It’s the Holy Spirit inspiring me to do this’. And when we realize we harbor within ourselves the desire to attack someone because they are weak, we have no doubt: It is the devil. Because attacking the weak is the work of Satan.”

“Let us ask the Lord to give us the grace of God’s compassion. He is the One who has compassion on us and helps us to move forward.”