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Rome Reports

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Pope Francis' messages against ideologies in the Church

In his last February General Audience, Pope Francis spoke of the threat of ideologies, a recurring theme in his pontificate. He explained that ideologies try to make the Church a political party.

Be careful, for the Gospel is not an idea; the Gospel is not an ideology. The Gospel is a proclamation that touches the heart and makes you change your heart. But if you take refuge in an idea, in an ideology, whether right or left or centre, you are making the Gospel a political party, an ideology, a club of people.

This is not the first time the Pope has spoken out against ideologies. During the 60th anniversary Mass for the Second Vatican Council, Pope Francis urged all Christians to avoid the polarization that comes with ideologies.

October 10, 2022

How often people have preferred to be supporters of their own group rather than serve all. Progressives and conservatives rather than brothers and sisters. “Of the right” or “of the left” rather than “of Jesus.” To prop themselves up “keepers of the truth” or “solo artists” rather than recognize themselves as humble children of the Holy Mother Church.

In a video message marking the fiftieth edition of the National Week for Consecrated Life in Spain in 2021, Pope Franics described how ideologies threaten the individual groups and institutions that make up the Church. He warned that when people look to ideologies for guidance, they lose themselves.

May 18, 2021

It is sad to see how some institutes, in search of a certain security, so as to be able to control themselves, give in to all kinds of ideologies, left, right, center. When an institute reformulates its character in terms of an ideology, it loses its identity, it loses its fruitfulness.

Pope Francis' repeated warnings against ideologies have a common thread—rather than getting lost in them, the Church must focus on its concrete mission in the world.