Pope Francis' message is simple: Listen; don't judge each other

(Photo: REUTERS / Tony Gentile)Pope Francis waves as he arrives to leads the weekly audience at Saint Peter's square in Vatican, October 9, 2013.

For the past six months, Pope Francis has stunned the public by expressing his opinions on topics where pontiffs once did not tread.

The Pope has expressed a determination to change what the Church is too fixated on and afraid to speak of, the latest on proselytizing.

"Proselytism is solemn nonsense, it makes no sense. We need to get to know each other, listen to each other and improve our knowledge of the world around us," Francis said in his much quoted interview with La Repubblica on October 1.

He urged judging people by what they do and not by what they call themselves even saying atheists can get grace.

Pope Francis wants people in the Church to get to know and listen to one another. He is living up to his own hazardous message to "mess up the Church" in order for the church to realize what they should be focusing on.

"The Lord created us in his image and likeness, and we are the image of the Lord, and he does good and all of us have this commandment at heart: do good and do not do evil. All of us. 'But, Father, this is not Catholic! He cannot do good.'

"Yes, he can... 'The Lord has redeemed all of us, all of us, with the Blood of Christ: all of us, not just Catholics. Everyone! 'Father, the atheists?'

"'Even the atheists. Everyone!'

"We must meet one another doing good. 'But I don't believe, Father, I am an atheist!'

"But do good: we will meet one another there," said Pope Francis.

The Pope wants the Church to focus on the good in people. He explained the Lord has redeemed all of us with the Blood of Christ, including the atheist.

"Atheists should be seen as good people, if they do good."

On Sunday, the Pope preached about the importance of gratitude for the Christian community and for families. "If families can say these three things, they will be fine. 'Sorry,' 'excuse me,' 'thank you.'

"How often do we say 'thank you' in our families? How often do we say 'thank you' to those who help us, those close to us, those at our side throughout life? All too often we take everything for granted!"

"Saying 'thank you' is such an easy thing, and yet so hard," said the Pope.

"Just do good, and we'll find a meeting point... it is precisely in poverty, in weakness, and in humility that he reveals himself and grants us his love, which saves us, heals us, and gives us strength," Francis stated.

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