• “It is God who gives life. Let us respect and love human life, especially vulnerable life in a mother’s womb.”
  • “A pregnant woman isn’t carrying a toothbrush in her belly, or a tumor…We are in the presence of a human being.”
  • “The right to life is the first human right. Abortion is killing someone that cannot defend him or herself.”
  • On the extension to all priests of the ability to forgive the sin of abortion, the pope said: “Careful, this does not mean trivializing abortion. Abortion is a grave, grave sin. It’s the homicide of an innocentBut if there is a sin, it is necessary to facilitate forgiveness.”

Amoris Laetitia

  • “The temptation is always the uniformity of the rules… take for example the apostolic exhortation Amoris Laetitia. When I speak of families in difficulty, I say: ‘We must welcome, accompany, discern, integrate…’ and then everyone will see open doors. What is actually happening is that people hear others say: ‘They can’t receive communion,’ ‘They can’t do it:’There lies the temptation of the Church. But ‘no,’ ‘no,’ ‘no!’ This type of prohibition is the same we find with Jesus and the Pharisees. The same! The great within the Church are those who have a vision that goes beyond, those who understand: The missionaries.”


  • “The world does not tolerate the divinity of Christ. It doesn’t tolerate the announcement of the Gospel. It does not tolerate the Beatitudes. And we have persecutions: with words, with insults, the things that they said about Christians in the early centuries, the condemnations, imprisonment…But we easily forget. We think of the many Christians, 60 years ago, in the labor camps, in the camps of the Nazis, of the communists: So many of them! For being Christians! And even today…But [people say] ‘today we are better educated and these things no longer exist.’ Yes they do!…They are condemned for having a Bible. They can’t wear a crucifix.”

Catholic Colleges

  • “Essential in this regard is the uncompromising witness of Catholic universities to the church’s moral teaching, and the defense of her freedom, precisely in and through her institutions, to uphold that teaching as authoritatively proclaimed by the magisterium of her pastors….Your own identity—as it was intended from the beginning—to defend it, preserve it, carry it forward.”

Catholic Dissidents

  • “Those with alternative teachings and doctrines [have] a partial belonging to the church. [They] have one foot outside the church. They rent the church.”
  • In 2014, the Tablet (U.K.) reported that “The head of pro-reform movement We Are Church in Austria has been excommunicated by Pope Francis for ‘celebrating’ Mass, the Austrian press has reported.”

Catholics and Politics

  • “A good Catholic meddles in politics, offering the best of himself, so that those who govern can govern.”

Communism and Christianity

  • The pope admitted to having been greatly influenced by a communist female militantEsther Ballestrino de Careaga, who founded a movement of mothers who denounced the killing of their children by the regime in Argentina.”She taught me to think about political reality, […] I owe so much to this woman,” Pope Francis said. “I was told once: ‘But you are a Communist!’ No, the Communists are the Christians. It’s the others who stole our banner!”


  • “A civilization whose technological advancements do not seek to protect the most vulnerable, from conception until natural death, fails to live up to its responsibility.”
  • “A just society recognizes the right to life from conception to natural death as paramount.”

False Compassion

  • “The dominant thinking sometimes suggests a ‘false compassion,’ that which believes that it is: helpful to women to promote abortion; an act of dignity to obtain euthanasia; a scientific breakthrough to ‘produce’ a child and to consider it to be a right rather than a gift to welcome; or to use human lives as guinea pigs presumably to save others. Instead, the compassion of the Gospel is that which accompanies in times of need, that is, the compassion of the Good Samaritan, who ‘sees,’ ‘has compassion,’ approaches and provides concrete help.”

Freedom of Expression (Charlie Hebdo)

  • “In theory, it may be said that the Gospel says we must turn the other cheek. In theory, we can say that we have the freedom to express ourselves, and this is important. In theory we are all in agreement, but we are human, and so there is prudence, which is a virtue in human coexistence. I cannot continually provoke or insult someone, because I would risk angering them, I risk receiving a reaction that is not right, not right. But it is human. Therefore, I say that the freedom of expression must take into consideration the reality of humanity, and for this reason I say that we must be prudent. This means we must be polite and prudent, as prudence is the virtue that regulates human relations.”
  • “If someone says a curse word against my mother, he can expect a punch. It’s normal. It’s normal. You cannot provoke. You cannot insult the faith of others. You cannot make fun of the faith of others.”

Gay Marriage

  • “Let us not be naive: this is not simply a political struggle, but it is an attempt to destroy God’s plan. It is not just a bill (a mere instrument) but a ‘move’ of the Father of Lies [the Devil] who seeks to confuse and deceive the children of God.”
  • “At stake is the identity and survival of the family: father, mother, and children.”
  • “At stake are the lives of many children who will be discriminated against in advance, and deprived of their human development given by a father and a mother and willed by God. At stake is the total rejection of God’s law engraved in our hearts.”
  • “Marriage between people of the same sex? ‘Marriage’ is a historical word. Always in humanity, and not only within the Church, it’s between a man and a woman… we cannot change that. This is the nature of things. This is how they are. Let’s call them ‘civil unions.’ Let’s not play with the truth. It’s true that behind it there is a gender ideology. In books also, children are learning that they can choose their own sex. Why is sex, being a woman or a man, a choice and not a fact of nature? This favors this mistake. But let’s say things as they are: Marriage is between a man and a woman. This is the precise term. Lets call unions between the same sex ‘civil unions’.”


  • “If someone is gay and is searching for the Lord and has good will, then who am I to judge him?”
  • “You have to distinguish between the fact of a person being gay, and the fact of a lobby. The problem isn’t the orientation. The problem is making a lobby.”

Gender Ideology

  • “I ask myself, if the so-called gender theory is not, at the same time, an expression of frustration and resignation, which seeks to cancel out sexual difference because it no longer knows how to confront it. Yes, we risk taking a step backwards.”
  • “The crisis of the family is a social reality. Then there are ideological colonizations of the family, modes and proposals from Europe and also from overseas. The error of the human mind that is gender theory creates a lot of confusion.”
  • “Gender ideology is demonic!”


  • “Migrants from Central America and Mexico…who cross the border with the United States under extreme conditions and in pursuit of a hope that in most cases turns out to be vain. They are increasing day by day. This humanitarian emergency requires, as a first urgent measure, these children be welcomed and protected. These measures, however, will not be sufficient, unless they are accompanied by policies that inform people about the dangers of such a journey, and above all, that promote development in their countries of origin.”


  • Muslims “don’t accept the principle of reciprocity. Some of the Gulf countries are open and help us to build churches. Why are they open? Because the[y] have Filipino, Catholic, Indian workers… the problem in Saudi Arabia is truly a question of mentality. With Islam, anyway, the dialogue is proceeding well, […] the Imam of Al-Azhar came to visit me. And there will be an encounter: I will go. I believe it would be good for them to have a critical study of the Koran, as we did with our Scriptures. The historical and critical method of interpretation will help them evolve.”

“Just War”

  • “Today we have to rethink the concept of ‘just war.’ We have learned in political philosophy that in order to protect yourself you may wage war and consider it just. But can it be defined a ‘just war’? The only just thing is peace… I don’t like to use the term ‘just war.’ We hear people say: ‘I make war because I have no other means to defend myself.’ But no war is just. The only just thing is peace.”

Marriage and the Family

  • “Complementarity will take many forms as each man and woman brings his or her distinctive contributions to their marriage and to the formation of their children—his or her personal richness, personal charisma.”
  • “Children have a right to grow up in a family with a father and a mother capable of creating a suitable environment for the child’s development and emotional maturity.”


  • “The Marxist ideology is wrong.”

Moral Destitution

  • Moral destitution…consists in slavery to vice and sin. How much pain is caused in families because one of their members—often a young person—is in thrall to alcohol, drugs, gambling or pornography!…In such cases moral destitution can be considered impending suicide.”

Pope Francis’ Positions on Sexual Issues

  • “The position of the Church. I am a son of the Church.”

Pope Pius XII

  • “What worries me regarding this subject is the figure of Pius XII, the Pope that led the Church during World War II. They have said all sorts of things about poor Pius XII. But we need to remember that before he was seen as the great defender of the Jews. He hid many in convents in Rome and in other Italian cities, and also in the residence of Castel Gandolfo. Forty-two babies, children of Jews and other persecuted who sought refuge there were born there, in the Pope’s room, in his own bed. I don’t want to say that Pius XII did not make any mistakes—I myself make many—but one needs to see his role in the context of the time. For example, was it better for him not to speak so that more Jews would not be killed or for him to speak?”

Priestly Sexual Abuse

  • “On this path, the Church has done much, perhaps more than all others. The Catholic Church is perhaps the only public institution that has moved with transparency and responsibility. No one has done more, and yet the Church is the only one that is being attacked.”


  • “The loose minister washed his hands by simply saying, ‘This is not a sin,’ or something like that.”


  • “One time, I heard a father in a meeting with married couples say, ‘I sometimes have to smack my children a bit, but never in the face so as not to humiliate them.’ How beautiful! He knows the sense of dignity! He has to punish them but does it justly and moves on.”


  • “We cannot forget the irreplaceable role of women in the family. The qualities of gentleness, of particular sensitivity and tenderness, which is abundant in the female soul, represent not only a genuine force for the life of families, for the irradiation of a climate of peace and harmony, but also a reality without which the human vocation would be unfeasible.”
  • “They are the strawberries on the cake, but we want more!”

Women Cardinals

  • “I don’t know where this idea sprang from. Women in the church must be valued, not clericalized. Whoever thinks of women as cardinals suffers a bit from clericalism.”

Women Priests

  • “The Church has spoken and said: ‘No.’ John Paul II said it, but with a definitive formulation. That door is closed.”
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