Home Vatican News Pope Francis recommends resolving church tensions with discussion, prayer

Pope Francis recommends resolving church tensions with discussion, prayer

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Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY — In the church, as in any other situation, “problems cannot be resolved by pretending they don’t exist,” Pope Francis said.

“Confronting one another, discussing and praying — that is how conflicts in the church are resolved,” the pope said May 18 before praying the “Regina Coeli” with visitors gathered in St. Peter’s Square.

A child waves a flag as Pope Francis leads his Sunday Angelus in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican May 18. (CNS photo/Tony Gentile, Reuters)

The pope focused his remarks on the day’s first reading, Acts 6:1-7, which describes how the early Christian community, as it grew to include people from different groups, began to experience internal tensions, and how those tensions were resolved at a meeting of the disciples.

Facing the problem, discussing solutions and praying about the tensions, he said, the disciples found harmony and an end to a situation in which there was “discontent, complaints, accusations of favoritism and inequality.”

“Gossip, envy and jealousy never can bring agreement, harmony and peace,” the pope said. “No gossip, no envy, no jealousy, you understand?” he asked the crowd.

After praying the “Regina Coeli,” Pope Francis asked people to join him praying a Hail Mary for the victims of recent flooding in Serbia and in Bosnia-Herzegovina.