Christian Facts

Quotes from the Popes

The current Pope, Francis, is the 266th pope of the Catholic church. Obviously, with that many men having held such a prominent position, many statements have been made and many of their comments are quotable. Below is a compilation of some of the most notable and quotable bits that have been uttered by the Popes over the centuries.

On Religion and the Church

“I see clearly that the thing the church needs most today is the ability to heal wounds and to warm the hearts of the faithful; it needs nearness, proximity.” ~Pope Francis

“The Church is or should go back to being a community of God’s people, and priests, pastors, and bishops, who have the care of souls, are at the service of the people of God.” ~Pope Francis

“Worshipping the Lord means giving Him the place that He must have; worshipping the Lord means stating, believing – not only by our words – that He alone truly guides our lives; worshipping the Lord means that we are convinced before Him that He is the only God, the God of our lives, the God of our history.” ~Pope Francis

“Science can purify religion from error and superstition. Religion can purify science from idolatry and false absolutes.” ~Pope John Paul II

“The Church of Christ, therefore, is one and the same forever.” ~Pope Leo XIII

“I accept with sincere belief the doctrine of faith as handed down to us from the Apostles by the orthodox Fathers, always in the same sense and with the same interpretation.” ~Pope Piux X

“Is the hierarchy perhaps free to teach what they find most to their liking on matters of religion, or what they expect will be most pleasing to the proponents of certain current views opposed to all doctrine? Certainly not! The prime duty of the episcopate is to transmit strictly and faithfully the original message of Christ, the sum total of the truths which He revealed and confided to the Apostles as necessary for salvation.” ~Pope Paul VI

“God ordained for every man one and the same means of salvation.” ~Pope Leo

“The faith of the Church is this: that one and identical is the Word of God and the Son of Mary who suffered on the cross, who is present in the eucharist, and who rules in Heaven.” ~Pope Piux XII

“The universality of salvation means that it is granted not only to those who explicitly believe in Christ and have entered the Church. Since salvation is offered to all, it must be made concretely available to all.” ~Pope John Paul II

“From the time the Christian religion began to be spread, she has held unchangeable and taught uncorrupted throughout the world the doctrines which she has received once and for all from her patron and founder, Saint Peter.” ~Pope Nicholas

“Anybody can be Pope; the proof of this is that I have become one.” ~Pope John XXIII

“No sacrifice is more acceptable to God than zeal for souls.” ~Pope Gregory

On Life and Death

“Even today we raise our hand against our brother… We have perfected our weapons, our conscience has fallen asleep, and we have sharpened our ideas to justify ourselves as if it were normal we continue to sow destruction, pain, death. Violence and war lead only to death.” ~Pope Francis

“The family is the first essential cell of human society.” ~Pope John XXIII

“Abortion isn’t a lesser evil, it’s a crime. Taking one life to save another, that’s what the Mafia does. It’s a crime. It’s an absolute evil.” ~Pope Francis

“The fundamental human right, the presupposition of every other right, is the right to life itself. This is true of life from the moment of conception until its natural end. Abortion, consequently, cannot be a human right – it is the very opposite. It is a deep wound in society.” ~Pope Benedict XVI

“Although the life of a person is in a land full of thorns and weeds, there is always a space in which the good seed can grow. You have to trust God.” ~Pope Francis

“Freedom consists not in doing what we like, but in having the right to do what we ought.” ~Pope John Paul II

“The body, in fact, and it alone is capable of making visible that which is invisible; the spiritual and the divine.” ~Pope John Paul II

“The future starts today, not tomorrow.” ~Pope John Paul II

“There are three influences which appear to us to have the chief place in effecting this downgrade movement of society. These are – first, the distaste for a simple and laborious life; secondly, repugnance to suffering of any kind; thirdly, the forgetfulness of the future life.” ~Pope Leo XIII

“It often happens that I wake up at night and begin to think about a serious problem and decide I must tell the Pope about it. Then I wake up completely and remember that I am the Pope.” ~Pope John XXIII

“If you follow the will of God, you know that in spite of all the terrible things that happen to you, you will never lose a final refuge. You know that the foundation of the world is love, so that even when no human being can or will help you, you may go on, trusting in the One that loves you.” ~Pope Benedict XVI

“See everything, overlook a great deal, correct a little.” ~Pope John XXIII

“We are not some casual and meaningless product of evolution. Each of us is the result of a thought of God.” ~Pope Benedict XVI

“We are not the sum of our weaknesses and failures; we are the sum of the Father’s love for us and our real capacity to become the image of His Son Jesus.” ~Pope John Paul II

On Helping Others

“A little bit of mercy makes the world less cold and more just.” ~Pope Francis

“Seeing with the eyes of Christ, I can give to others much more than their outward necessitites; I can give them the look of love which they crave.” ~Pope Benedict XVI

“We must restore hope to young people, help the old, be open to the future, spread love. Be poor among the poor. We need to include the excluded and preach peace.” ~Pope Francis

“We all have the duty to do good.” ~Pope Francis

“Love of Christ does not distract us from interest in others, but rather invites us to responsibility for them, to the exclusion of no one.” ~Pope John Paul II

“We just cannot worry about ourselves.” ~Pope Francis

“Do not be afraid, then, when love makes demands. Do not be afraid when love requires sacrifice.” ~Pope John Paul II

“The State which would provide everything, absorbing everything into itself, would ultimately become a mere bureaucracy incapable of guaranteeing the very thing which the suffering person – every person – needs: namely, loving personal concern. We do not need a State which regulates and controls everything, but a State which, in accordance with the principle of subsidiarity, generously acknowledges and supports initiatives arising from the different social forces and combines spontaneity with closeness to those in need. The Church is one of those living forces.” ~Pope Benedict XVI

“Anything done for another is done for oneself.” ~Pope John Paul II

“We should let God be the One to praise us and not praise ourselves. For God detests those who commend themselves. Let others applaud our good deeds.” ~Pope Clement I

On God

“God is not only true, but Truth itself.” ~Pope Leo XIII

“From my point of view, God is the light that illuminates the darkness, even if it does not dissolve it, and a spark of divine light is within each of us.” ~Pope Francis

“Find new ways to spread the word of God to every corner of the world.” ~Pope Francis

“God is not solitude, but perfect communion. For this reason, the human person, the image of God, realizes himself or herself in love, which is a sincere gift of self.” ~Pope Benedict XVI

“I believe in God – not in a Catholic God; there is no Catholic God. There is God, and I believe in Jesus Christ, His incarnation. Jesus is my teacher and my pastor, but God, the Father, Abba, is the light and the Creator. This is my Being.” ~Pope Francis

“I have a dogmatic certainty: God is in everyone’s life. Even if the life of a person has been a disaster, even if it is destroyed by vices, drugs, or anything else – God is in this person’s life. You can – you must – try to seek God in every human life.” ~Pope Francis

“God being infinite beauty; the soul united to Christ draws upon himself the admiring and tender gaze of the Angels, who, were they capable of any passion, would be filled with envy at His lot.” ~Pope Pius X

On Money & Economics

“Human rights are not only violated by terrorism, repression, or assassination, but also by unfair economic structures that create huge inequalities.” ~Pope Francis

“These days there is a lot of poverty in the world, and that’s a scandal when we have so many riches and resources to give to everyone. We all have to think about how we can become a little poorer.” ~Pope Francis

“Money has to serve, not to rule.” ~Pope Francis

“Young people are threatened… by the evil use of advertising techniques that stimulate the natural inclination” ~Pope John Paul II

“Don’t be anxious about what you have, but about what you are.” ~Pope Gregory

The Popes have shared much wisdom over the centuries, and this is only a small sampling of the statements made by the Pontiffs.