“When Francis, here, made this gesture of undressing, he was a young man: he didn’t have strength. It was the power of God that drove him to do this,” said the Pope, who spoke from the place where St. Francis is said to have disrobed in an act of solidarity with the poor and total reliance on God.
St. Francis’ gesture was a visible reminder of Jesus own willingness to “undress” himself: “he became a servant, he wanted to be humbled.”
“And if we want to be Christians, there is no other way,” the Pope stated. “We must undress ourselves today from a very serious danger that threatens each person in the Church: the danger of worldliness.”
True Christianity embraces the cross because it is the way of Christ. “Jesus himself said one can´t serve two masters. Either serve God or serve money.”
“Money,” the Pope said, indicates “the whole spirit of worldliness: money, vanity, pride, that path.” Worldliness “leads us to vanity, arrogance, pride,” he continued. “And that is an idol, it’s not God.”
“It is truly ridiculous that a Christian, a true Christian…wants to go along the path of worldliness,” the pontiff insisted. “It is a homicidal attitude. Spiritual worldliness kills. It kills the soul, it kills the person. It kills the Church.”
Christians cannot be unconcerned about those in the world who suffer in situations of poverty or other difficulties, the Pope emphasized.