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 CNS Story:

POPE-IDOLATRY Jun-6-2013 (370 words) xxxi

Seduced by worldly things, people cheat on God, pope says

By Carol Glatz
Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Getting caught up in worldly things is like being an adulterer, cheating on God and his love, Pope Francis said in a morning homily.

The only path that will lead people to God is faithfully putting him before everything else with "nuptial love," the pope said at Mass June 6 in the chapel of the Domus Sanctae Marthae.

"Idolatry is subtle, he said, and "all of us have our hidden idols," big and small, getting in the way of one's journey toward God's kingdom.

"It's not enough to say, 'But I believe in God, God is the only God,'" the pope said. "That's all fine, but how do you live this out on your life's journey?"

Living as if God weren't the only God means risking the "danger of idolatry, an idolatry that is brought to us with the spirit of the world," he said.

Finding the only path that leads to the kingdom of God requires discovering and destroying one's "hidden idols," which can lie tucked away "in our personalities, in the way we live," the pope said.

"These hidden idols cause us to be unfaithful in love," he said.

The pope quoted the Apostle James, who said: "Adulterers! Do you not know that to be a lover of the world means enmity with God?"

The apostle uses the word "adulterers," the pope said, because he "who is a friend of the world is an idolater, unfaithful to God's love."

People must destroy the idols they place before God because the only way to follow him is with love built on fidelity like that of married love.

"How is it possible not to be faithful to a love so grand?" the pope asked. It all starts with trusting in Christ, who is a model of complete fidelity and "who loves us so much."

"We can ask Jesus today, 'Lord, you who are so good, teach me this path for being less far from the Kingdom of God every day, this path for driving out all idols,'" he said.

"It's difficult," the pope said, "but we have to start" getting rid of all the hidden worldly idols because they "lead us to become enemies of God."

END


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