Tuesday, January 19, 2016

This is a keeper: A quote from Pope Francis ...

Penitence of David

"There is no saint without a past and no sinner without a future”. - Pope Francis

That is taken from his homily discussing King David, anointed by Samuel to succeed Saul.

David committed a lot of sins - very serious crimes.  Yet as the Holy Father pointed out, "but he never used God for his own purpose”.  A great sinner, but a repentant one.


  1. Actually, I think that's just a variation of an Oscar Wilde quote.

    "The only difference between the saint and the sinner is that every saint has a past, and every sinner has a future." - Oscar Wilde

  2. What exactly does it suppose to mean "he never used God for his own purpose"?

    To me that sounds like one of the meaningless flourishes on modernistic pious flourishes.

    Who is "using God for his own purpose"?

    1. I get it. But I'm a sinner who used God for my own purpose. There is a psalm verse which might apply:

      Sin speaks to the sinner in the depths of his heart,
      there is no fear of God before his eyes,
      he so flatters himself, he knows not his guilt.
      He plots the defeat of goodness as he lays on his bed ...

      David's repentance was sincere - he did penance, he accepted the condemnation, he never trusted himself.

      Some men commit sin and repent but they remain attached to their sin - they believe they have expiated their guilt and they should be esteemed and praised - using God to promote themselves, as it were. Much like the commercial evangelists in the past - caught in adultery, they cry on television and get even more donations and accolades.

      David suffered loss and did penance. He accepted the shame Shimei cast upon him because he knew his sins deserved worse. David's spirit was broken, his heart was contrite and humbled - after his sin, he never sought to exalt himself as Saul.

      I'm not explaining myself very well, but Teresa of Avila's writing would do so - they would very much parallel what the Holy Father says here. She knew this from her own experience - when she taught prayer to all those who sought her out, albeit she was not practicing prayer herself. She laments her double life in her Autobiography. She enjoyed popularity for her holiness when she wasn't even practicing what she taught.

      Perhaps Martin Luther could be an example of a man who used God for his own purpose? Or better yet, Fr. Maciel.

      How is it that people do not understand these things and accuse the Pope of teaching heresy or attempting to mislead the faithful?

    2. Read Chapter 7 of the Autobiography:

      http://jesus-passion.com/Life_of_Saint_Teresa_Part1.htm#Chapter 7

    3. Thank you again for your clarification of what Papa Francis preached. When I read what he said, the thought that came to me was, "sorta like hiding behind God, pretending to be something I am not and using the Father to puff myself up."

      I get and got and hope to do better.

  3. What Hans said. It seems like Francis is trying to make David a noble sinner. Either he sinned...adultery, spouse murder....or he didn't. What's with the roundabout praise within sinning?

  4. How is Pope Francis praising sin? He is clearly saying that all saints were past sinners (aren't we all) and that all sinners have a chance of being a saint? Plus, we all know the best saints had wild sinful pasts..its makes them both more interesting and more inspiring.

    1. This is why, my friend. This is why I love you.


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