No disease makes a person impure; only sin does that, Pope Francis said.
While being sick can impact a person’s whole being, “it in no way impairs or impedes one’s relationship with God. In fact, a sick person can be even more united to God,” the pope said on 11th February, commenting on the day’s Gospel reading about Jesus healing a leper.
“Sin is what makes us impure,” the pope said. “Selfishness, pride,” corruption – “these are the diseases of the heart which must be purified by turning to Jesus like the leper did, ‘If you wish, you can make me clean’.”
Speaking to an estimated 30,000 people gathered in St Peter’s Square, Pope Francis asked them to take a moment in silence and think about “your own impurities, your own sins,” and then, in silence, tell Jesus, “If you wish, you can make me clean.”
Every time someone goes to confession with a repentant heart, he said, Jesus responds as he did to the leper, “Yes. Be made clean.”
Picture: Pope Francis waves after registering for Panama’s World Youth Day 2019 during the Angelus prayer in St Peter’s Square on 11th February at the Vatican. (CNS photo/Max Rossi, Reuters).