Yesterday's Papal homily, delivered by the Pope without notes after conducting Mass in his residence, included a story about a priest who told an atheist that he was redeemed by Jesus just as a Catholic would be, so long as the atheist "did good."
"Just do good, and we'll find a meeting point," the pope said in a hypothetical conversation in which someone told a priest: "But I don't believe. I'm an atheist."
Francis's reaching out to atheists and people who belong to no religion is a marked contrast to the attitude of former Pope Benedict, who sometimes left non-Catholics feeling that he saw them as second-class believers.
Atheists are good if they do good, Pope Francis says
One of my favorite podcasts is Oh No Ross and Carrie, in which two investigative journalists join cults and fringe religions, and try out new age remedies and practices, and report back on the experience.
Every year, like clockwork, longstanding Oklahoma legislators in the state’s house and senate introduce bills that try to find a way around the prohibition on teaching Biblical Creationism in American public schools.
The Pope’s message, contained in an open letter, is more directed to the faithful than the nonbelievers, and is a repudiation of millennias’ worth of Church doctrine that equates heresy with sin.
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