Pope warns against creating "little monsters" in religious formation

Pope meets with leaders of men's religious congregations about the challenges facing religious life on Nov.29.

January 04 2014, 8:13 AM
Pope warns against creating
Pope Francis

“We must form their hearts. Otherwise we are creating little monsters. And then these little monsters mold the People of God. This really gives me goose bumps.” 

This is one of the stronger passages of the conversation between Pope Francis and the Union of Superiors General of Men (USGM), the world body for leaders of religious congregations of men. The long dialog that went for several hours about the challenges faced by religious life occurred during the Nov 27 - 29 USGM meeting in Rome, the world body for leaders of religious congregations. The meeting with the Pope is reported by La Civiltà Cattolica

Father Antonio Spadaro, editor-in-chief of La Civilta Cattolica, joined the 120 superiors general who met with the Pope last November 29. He recounts the free and spontaneous conversation in his chronicle of the meeting and sets the encounter in the context of the recent teaching of Pope Francis.

Among the many themes that surfaced: our complicated life which consists of grace and sin; being prophets in our world, fraternal community, complaints of a “novice slave trade” and of attitudes such as hypocrisy and fundamentalism, praise for Benedict XVI’s courageous decisions in confronting cases of abuse, the importance of charisms, the most urgent challenges, the relation between religious and bishops, the need for tenderness, knowing how to “caress conflicts,” and a jolt that is able to awaken our benumbed world. 

Read the original report