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Rome Reports

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Pope Francis explains how to reject false idols during the general audience

During the general audience, Pope Francis deepened the topic of idolatry. He recalled that insecurities are what lead people to look for idols to meet their immediate needs. This why people who create Gods to fit only their wants are worshiping idols.

Pope Francis explained that this occurred with the people of Israel when they created the golden calf. A symbol of all desires that gives the illusion of freedom but in reality enslave.

The pope said that freedom comes from placing one's own insufficiency and fragility in God's hands.

Dear brothers and sisters: 

In our continuing catechesis on the Ten Commandments, we now consider the question of idolatry. When the people of Israel turned away from God to worship a golden calf, they did so in the desert. This is significant, for the desert symbolizes our human frailty, weakness and uncertainty. How often we seek to avoid the fears of our own desert experience by creating idols and artificial answers in a kind of “do-it-yourself” religion. Like the people instructed by Aaron to use flashy golden ornaments to make a false god, we too can be tempted to seek our identity in illusions and idols. Yet God, revealed in Jesus Christ, announces the authentic way to respond to the challenges of the desert. It is only the Lord who can answer and fulfill the deepest yearnings of our hearts. He teaches us this most powerfully from the cross, where Jesus shows that our fragility is no longer to be seen as a curse, but a place to encounter our heavenly Father, who strengthens us for the journey.