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Pope: In conflict, St. Paul ‘goes high’

Kathleen N. Hattrup - published on 06/30/21

The Apostle doesn't stop at the surface of the problem to find a quick fix, notes Pope Francis in catechesis on Galatians.

Pope Francis has started a teaching series on St. Paul’s Letter to the Galatians. In the second installment, given June 30, the Holy Father noted how St. Paul responds to the conflict facing the Galatians by ‘flying high.’

He “shows us, too, how to behave when conflicts arise within the community,” the Pope said.

The Galatians are divided over the question of circumcision, and whether non-Jewish converts to Christianity must first be circumcised.

“Paul chooses to go deeper, because what is at stake is the truth of the Gospel and the freedom of Christians, which is an integral part of it,” the Pope said.

He does not stop at the surface of the problems, of conflicts, as we are often tempted to do in order to find an immediate solution that deludes us into thinking that we can all agree with a compromise. Paul loves Jesus and knows that Jesus is not a man, a God of compromises.

Instead, Pope Francis said, “the Apostle chose to take the more challenging route. He writes: ‘Am I now seeking human approval, or God’s approval?’ He does not try to make peace with everyone. And he continues: ‘Or am I trying to please people? If I were still pleasing people, I would not be a servant of Christ’ (Gal 1:10).”

BiblePope Francis
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