Saturday, January 4, 2014

Pope: Church Must Not Create "Little Monsters;" Urges Seminaries to "Form the Hearts" of Students

Pope Francis has said men studying for the Roman Catholic priesthood should be properly trained or the Church could risk "creating little monsters" more concerned with their careers than serving people, the Catholic News (New Zealand) website reports today (January 4, 2014).

Describing the formation of future priests as a work of art -- not a police action -- the Holy Father urged the major superior of priests religious orders to "form their hearts." If we fail to form their hearts, "we are creating little monsters. And then these little monsters mould the people of God," the Pope warned.

Francis said men should not enter the priesthood to seek a comfortable life or to rise up the clerical career ladder. "The ghost to fight against is the image of religious life understood as an escape or hiding place in face of an 'external' difficult and complex world," he said.

Priests must have "real contact with the poor" and other marginalized members of society, he added. The Pope's comments have been published in the current issue of the Italian Jesuit journal "Civilta Cattolica."

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