Pope Francis says he 'stole' his late confessor's cross
Francis made the claim during a meeting about forgiveness with Roman priests
Pope Francis has admitted he took the rosary cross of his late confessor from the dead man’s casket and still wears it in a fabric pouch under his cassock.
Francis made the confession during an informal chat with Roman priest about the need to be merciful to their flocks. He said he told the late priest: “Give me half your mercy.”
Francis was telling the story of the “great confessor” of Buenos Aires, who had heard confessions from most of his diocesan priests as well as from Pope John Paul II when he visited Argentina.
When the priest died, Francis went to pray at his open casket and was shocked that no one had left any flowers.
He said: ''This man forgave the sins of all the priests of Buenos Aires, but not a single flower ...?"
Francis left and returned with a bouquet of roses. As he was arranging them, he noticed that the priest still held a rosary in his hand.
"And immediately there came to mind the thief we all have inside ourselves and while I arranged the flowers I took the cross and with just a bit of force I removed it," he said, showing with his hands how he pulled the cross off the rosary.
"And in that moment I looked at him and I said 'Give me half your mercy."'
Francis said he kept the token in his shirt pocket for years, but transferred it to a pouch when he became pope as his cassock does not have a pocket.
"And whenever a bad thought comes to mind about someone, my hand goes here, always," he said, gesturing to his heart.
"And I feel the grace, and that makes me feel better."
Additional reporting by Associated Press
By performing as African Americans or Indians, white people get to play act a kind of 'imaginary liberation', writes Michael Mark Cohen
New essay by JK Rowling went live on Pottermore site this morning
New UK station Russia Today gives a very bizarre view of Britain
Top Gear presenter is no stranger to foot-in-mouth controversy
- 1 Canadian actor punched in face after 'Islamophobia' experiment goes wrong in wake of Ottawa shooting
- 2 Topshop at centre of row over body image as 'shocking' skinny mannequin photo goes viral
- 3 Top Gear presenter Jeremy Clarkson criticised for beer tweet
- 4 The bubble bursts for Sodastream
- 5 If you think Russell Brand’s new book is confused, you should read what his critics have to say about it
'Nasa Confirms Six Days of Darkness in December': No, they don't - it's a hoax
Top Gear presenter Jeremy Clarkson criticised for beer tweet
The bubble bursts for Sodastream
Russian politician says Apple CEO Tim Cook should be 'banned' from country after coming out as gay
'Santa Claus' dead: John Moore starred in Coca Cola and Morrisons adverts
Pope Francis declares evolution and Big Bang theory are real and God is not 'a magician with a magic wand'
Huge surge in Ukip support after EU funding row, according to new poll
Ukip ‘exploiting grooming scandal’ to secure party’s first police chief
Nigel Farage: 'There’s nothing wrong with white people blacking up'
Maureen Lipman says 'she can't vote Labour while Ed Miliband is leader'
Muslims, immigration and teenage pregnancy: British people are ignorant about almost everything
£40000 - £65000 per annum + bonus + benefits + OT: Ampersand Consulting LLP: M...
£22800 - £33600 per annum: Randstad Education Manchester Secondary: The JobAt ...
£22800 - £33600 per annum: Randstad Education Manchester Secondary: Calling al...
£100 - £125 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: EYFS Teachers - East Essex...