pope francis 1My article for Aleteia this week examines Pope Francis’ pleas for mercy and how they are best balanced by the other need for justice.

In the realm of religion there seems to be two categories of people according to two personality types. The first you might call the merciful. They say with Jesus, “Neither do I condemn you.” The second are the judgmental. They scold the person saying, “Go and sin no more.” The first are inclined to be too soft and let people off the hook. The second demand that wrongdoing receive a just punishment. Those who follow the way of Jesus Christ must attempt the same balance he achieved in which the demand for justice is balanced by the need for mercy.

In two recent decisions Pope Francis has showed the world that the Catholic Church does the same work as Jesus Christ in the world today.

Moving forward to the year of mercy which begins on December 8, Pope Francis announced that all priests would have the authority to forgive the sin of abortion and lift the penalty of excommunication from those who have either chosen abortion or helped to procure or perform an abortion. The pope’s decision was misunderstood by some, who concluded wrongly that this was the first time the sin of abortion could be forgiven.

In fact the sin of abortion has always been forgivable

Read the full article here at Aleteia