Pope Warns Priests of the Lure of Power and Money

VATICAN CITY, NOV. 18, 2003 (Zenit.org).- John Paul II made an energetic appeal to priests not to give in to the temptation of power or money.

“Unfortunately, even those who have been ordained to service can at times fall victim to unhealthy cultural or societal trends which undermine their credibility and seriously hamper their mission,” the Pope lamented on Monday.

“As men of faith, priests must not let the temptation of power or material gain distract them from their vocations, nor can they permit ethnic or caste difference to detract from their fundamental charge to spread the Gospel,” he said when meeting with the last group of bishops from Indian on their five-yearly visit to the Holy See.

“As fathers and brothers, bishops are to love and respect their priests,” the Pope said. “Likewise, priests should love and honor their bishops. You and your priests are heralds of the Gospel and builders of unity in India. Personal differences or accidents of birth must never undermine this essential role.”

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