The Pope warns of the “practical atheism” of those who claim to believe in God but then put “distances” with others

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Pope Francis has warned of the “practical atheism” of those who claim to believe in God, but then put “distance” with others while stressing that it is not possible to “love God” and “hate” others.

“If someone says” I love God “and hates his brother, he is a liar,” said the Holy Father during the general audience on Wednesday that he dedicated to prayer. And with this idea he has sentenced: “If you pray and then speak ill of others or have a grudge inside, this is pure artifice, it is not true.”

The pontiff has insisted that the Holy Scriptures are clear in this regard, stating that prayer “holds responsibility” before others. “Prayer is not a painkiller to alleviate the anxieties of life; or, anyway, a prayer of this type is surely not Christian,” he said.

Thus, he invited us to welcome the true spirit of prayer “with sincerity” so that it “descends into the heart” to make reality be contemplated “with the eyes of God.” “The worst service that can be rendered, to God and also to man, is to pray wearily, as if it were a habit. No. Prayer is the center of life. If there is prayer, also the brother, the sister, becomes important, “the Pope explained.

The pontiff delivered the catechesis without a mask, but respecting safety distances at all times. In fact, in addition to avoiding greetings or blessings to the faithful, he has remained seated at all times in the atrium of the Paul VI hall of the Vatican. This Tuesday the Pope showed himself in a public act for the first time with a mask when participating in an international prayer meeting with other religious leaders in the center of Rome.

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