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The Francis Chronicles

Pope: Use gifts to benefit church, not create division, envy, annoyance

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Everyone has a special gift to offer the whole church, just make sure it is used to serve everyone and not to puff up one's own pride or to create division, Pope Francis said.

"It is a gift that God has given to someone not because he or she is a better person than someone else or because she or he deserves it," the pope said Wednesday at his weekly general audience in St. Peter's Square.

Pope launches alarm, tells Vatican security force to be 'gossip police'

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The biggest threat facing the Vatican isn't a bomb or bullet from the outside, but the insidious work of mischief-makers within, who plant discord and resentment, Pope Francis told the Vatican's security force.

"There are bombs in here, very dangerous bombs in here," he told security personnel. "Please, keep your eyes open, because in the darkness of so many wicked lives, the enemy has sown weeds," he said in his homily.

Pope: Greed, throwaway culture fuel 'hidden euthanasia' of elderly

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Pope Francis warned against the abandonment and neglect of the elderly, calling it a "hidden euthanasia" rooted in today's "poisonous" culture of disposal and an economic system of greed.

In the presence of his predecessor, Pope Francis also thanked retired Pope Benedict XVI for staying to live at the Vatican and being like "a wise grandfather at home."

"A people who don't take care of their grandparents and don't treat them well is a people with no future. Why no future? Because they lose the memory [of the past] and they sever their own roots," he said.

In homily, pope compares vain Christians to soap bubbles, peacocks

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As fleeting as soap bubbles, showy as peacocks and shallow as an over-primped star, conceited Christians are building their lives on lies and their faith on shifting sands, Pope Francis said.

Everyone is vulnerable to vanity, even Christians, the pope said in a morning homily Thursday.

However, boastfulness "is a very serious spiritual disease" for Christians because it distances them from the truth. Christians are called to "be authentic with the truth of reality and of the Gospel," he said in remarks reported by Vatican Radio.

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In This Issue

November 21-December 5, 2014

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