New Year’s resolutions: The Pope Francis list …

By using direct quotes from Pope Francis, Paterno Esmaquel II came up with a list of 10 resolutions for every Catholic to choose in this new year. I share them here for the next few weeks for your edification. For the full article, including pictures go to:

1. Don’t gossip.
It’s one of our hobbies. For Francis, it’s also one of the most evil activities. The Catholic leader denounces gossip as “murder.” He feels so strongly about it that in less than a year as pontiff, Francis has preached against gossip in at least 6 different instances. He says when we gossip, we “are doing what Judas did,” and “begin to tear the other person to pieces.” “Every time we judge our brother in our hearts or worse when we speak badly of them with others, we are murdering Christians,” Francis says. “There is no such thing as innocent slander.”

2. Finish your meals.
No leftovers, please. Named after a 12th-century saint who lived in poverty, Francis slams a “culture of waste” that neglects the plight of the hungry. Nearly 870 million people suffer from chronic malnutrition, says the Food and Agriculture Organization. The Pope says: “We should all remember… that throwing food away is like stealing from the tables of the poor, the hungry! I encourage everyone to reflect on the problem of thrown away and wasted food to identify ways and means that, by seriously addressing this issue, are a vehicle of solidarity and sharing with the needy.”

3. Make time for others.
Tending to 1.2 billion members, Francis seems too busy for anything else. That is, until he calls up strangers. Or entertains a random biker. Or sends a handwritten letter to a Jesuit he has never met.

4. Choose the ‘more humble’ purchase.
Take it from the head of state who rides a 29-year-old Renault. In July, he warns against luxurious lives that seek “the joy of the world in the latest smartphone, the fastest car.” “Cars are necessary,” he says, “but take a more humble one. Think of how many children die of hunger and dedicate the savings to them.” The Pope preaches against materialism. “Certainly, possessions, money, and power can give a momentary thrill, the illusion of being happy, but they end up possessing us and making us always want to have more, never satisfied. ‘Put on Christ’ in your life, place your trust in him, and you will never be disappointed!” He calls for a “sober and essential lifestyle.”