Vatican City, Apr 24, 2019 / 03:46 am
To stop the spread of evil in the world, Catholics must go above and beyond, loving and forgiving others even when it is undeserved, Pope Francis urged Wednesday.
“Jesus inserts the power of forgiveness into human relationships. In life, not everything is resolved with justice,” he said April 24.
“Especially where we must put a barricade against evil, someone must love beyond what is necessary, to start a story of grace again,” he said, warning that “evil is familiar with its revenge, and if it is not interrupted it risks spreading and suffocating the whole world.”
The Easter Octave, he said, is a good time to think about the beauty of forgiveness and to pray to the Father for the grace to forgive others, explaining that Jesus replaced the “law of retaliation” with the “law of love: what God has done for me, I give it back to you!”
The pope continued his general audience catechesis on the ‘Our Father’ by reflecting on the line which says, “Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.”
In forgiveness we find “the bond between love for God and love of neighbor,” he said. “Love calls love, forgiveness calls forgiveness.”
“Every Christian knows that forgiveness of sins exists for him. This we all know, that Jesus forgives everyone and forgives always. Nothing in the Gospels suggests that God does not forgive the sins of those who are well disposed and who ask to be re-embraced,” he said.
“But,” he continued, “the abundant grace of God is always challenging. He who has received so much must learn to give so much.”