Pope Francis speaks about the persecution of Christians under secularism and other violent ideologies

During his Friday homily Pope Francis spoke about the persecution of Christians under secularism and other violent ideologies:

“All the people whom the Holy Spirit chooses to tell the truth to the People of God suffer persecution,” said Pope Francis – and Jesus “is precisely the model, the icon.” The Lord took upon Himself “all the persecutions of His people.” The Holy Father went on to note that Christians continue to suffer persecution even today. “I dare say,” he added, “that perhaps there are as many or more martyrs now that in the early days,” because they tell the truth and proclaim Christ Jesus to a worldly society in love with ease and desirous of avoiding problems.”:

“There is the death penalty or imprisonment for having the Gospel at home, for teaching the Catechism, today, in some parts of the world. A Catholic from one of these countries told me that they cannot pray together. It is forbidden. People can only pray alone and in secret – but they want to celebrate the Eucharist and how do they do? They throw a birthday party, they pretend to celebrate the birthday there and [have Mass] before the ‘party’. It has happened. When they see the police arrive, they just hide everything and [continue with the birthday party-cover]. Then, when [authorities] leave, they finish the [Mass]. They have to do so, because it is forbidden to pray together: in this very day.”

This history of persecution, he remarked , “is the way of the Lord: it is the path of those who follow the Lord.” Pope Francis went on to say that this story ends as always in Resurrection, though only by passing by way of the Cross. The Holy Father then turned his attention to Fr. Matteo Ricci, SJ, an evangelizer of China, who was not understood, either. “He obeyed as Jesus did, though,” said Pope Francis. “Always,” he continued, “there will be persecutions, misunderstandings. Jesus is Lord, however, and that is the challenge and the Cross of our faith.” The Pope concluded, asking God to give us the grace to go on His way, and if it happens, even with the cross of persecution.”


M Donnelly comment: Pray for those who are persecuted and for strength to protect our faith.

22 comments to Pope Francis speaks about the persecution of Christians under secularism and other violent ideologies

  • Chrysostom

    It is quite right for the Pope to mention this – the BBC will not mention the persecution of Christians. Just take the one thing about China – that the state decides on how many children you have – normally only one – and then you have to have compulsory abortions. Not even Hitler and Stalin were as bad as that. The so-called “feminists” do not even mention this evil, let alone fight it. The Catholic bishops of the western countries should lead the fight against persecution which exists in many countries. When have you heard a bidding prayer for the persecuted in China?

    • confused

      Some terrible things happen in China under the “one child” policy. But there is nothing to suggest that it is targeted at Christians.

      • Lynda

        Christians are persecuted for the attempt to practice and live their Faith. Hence, “the underground Church”. We must support them.

  • Genty

    Absolutely. Pray for those who, day by day, hour by hour, minute by minute, suffer the cruellist persecution for their love of Christ. How spiritually flabby we are in the developed world.

  • Paul

    “for teaching the Catechism” I’m really liking Pope Francis more and more each day. How many times have faithful Catholics in the UK been rebuffed for teaching the Catechism. It seems that even our own Bishops are frowned upon when trying to push forward true Catholic Doctrine. When will those in the Bishops Conference and the Catholic Education Service admit that 95% of children Apostate after college or university. Why cant they just admit that this quasi-secular catholicism and compromise has NOT WORKED. Your methods since the sixties have resulted in turning many of the faithful away from the Church. And its not good enough to just say “trust in the Lord and their souls will take care of themselves”. Your system is failing and as Pope Gregory the Great said “the governance of souls is the art of all arts”. I don’t see and artist, painters or creators, just ignorance and failure. When will you admit sound Catholic Doctrine is what keeps people in the church? I pray that you open your eyes and truly see what has become of the Church in this country and heal the wounds inflicted by those who are supposed to be our shepherds.

    Amen i say pray for Holy men and Women. pray pray pray

  • Lola

    Good morning, Deacon Nick and M: Just drawing your attention to Rorate’s article as below. Is it likely to take place in our Parishes in E&W? Yes, simply because there is no mechanism in place to monitor rogue priests.


    The Crisis of the Church is a Crisis of Bishops:
    Mockery and Scandal in the Cathedral for celebration of Baptism of daughter of “two mothers” in Córdoba, Argentina

  • What about the persecution of faithful Catholics under many modern-day Catholic parishes, where with no shortage of priests to hear Confessions, we are yet again going to have a “Reconciliation Service” performed by a nun?

  • Rifleman819

    Dear Mrs Donnelly,

    A most apposite comment about persecution and secularism. But we need to wake up smartish to the anti-Christian campaigns contemplated in Warrington rather than Waziristan. PtP covered the topic in part in Feb 2013 when we debated about the NSS/BHA-fronted campaign against Catholic schools in the LB Richmond-it was called “RISC-Richmond Inclusive Schools Campaign”.

    The specifically anti-Catholic legal action went all the way to a High Court appeal by RISC against the Borough allowing the building work to start.It failed …but ..but ..at the very same time there was no similar demonstration by the Humanists and Secularists outside Darwen and Hyndburn Council Offices against a new Muslim Tauheedul Academy opening in Blackburn.

    One wonders why?

    It seems our glorious British Humanists would like to try and persecute Christians when they can but are rather less heroic when it comes to doing likewise with Islam.
    Secular martyrdom isn’t really their cup of tea.

  • Lionel Andrades

    M Donnelly
    Pray for those who are persecuted and for strength to protect our faith.
    for strength to protect our faith.

    To protect our faith it is first necessary to proclaim it.It is necessary to discuss it…

  • Lynda

    The persecution of Catholics within the Church has increased dramatically and is being ignored by those in authority. The suppression of the orthodox Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate by the Holy See is just one of many signs of the evil in the Church. Blessed Michael defend us in the hour of battle …

  • Richard

    Well done Pope Francis. Let’s hope that he referred to this when meeting Queen Elizabeth. The Government is very good at putting pressure on other countries when something is happening that they don’t like. They don’t seem to be quite so interested when it’s Christians being attacked.

    Just found this. Cameron’s friend Obama isn’t going to be much help protecting Christians (Not that Cameron will be doing it anyway)

  • Lynda

    http://rorate-caeli.blogspot.ie/2014/04/intervention-in-franciscans-of.html?m=1 See what the Pope has to say to the distraught parents of six children consecrated in the Franciscans of the Immaculate when they beg that the they will be “released from the tomb”.

  • jacobi

    It is good that the Holy Father raises this matter. Yes Christians are being persecuted now more than ever. In the Middle East, China and in Africa.

    We should be shouting our righteous anger from the rooftops.

    If we are not careful persecution will soon come in Western countries, not just in the form of civil law actions but imprisonment.

  • Lionel Andrades

    The young Muslims who kill themself thinking they are going to Heaven have never been exposed to Catholics who believe that these young people are on the way to Hell according to the teachings of the Catholic Church.(Vatican Council II, CCC 846 etc).

    The Catholic Church’s teaching are not known by Catholics and it is not discussed regularly and freely on Catholic forums including this one.

    • Lionel – I am sorry that you think the Catholic Church’s teaching is not discussed regularly and freely on this site. Perhaps it would be useful to explore what ‘freely’ means. My understanding of freedom is that we have the freedom to choose to follow God’s will. It does not mean that we can do anything we like – especially not to insult other people and fail to act out of true love. I am trying to get the balance of speaking the truth in love right.

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