One of the greatest tricks of the Devil is convincing people he doesn’t exist.
Starting with his very first homily as the bishop of Rome, Pope Francis has always reminded believers that the Devil is real, that we must be on guard, and that our only hope against him is in Jesus Christ.
Here are 10 of Pope Francis’ most direct quotes on the matter:
1) “The Prince of this world, Satan, doesn’t want our holiness, he doesn’t want us to follow Christ. Probably some of you might say: ‘But Father, how old fashioned you are to speak about the devil in the 21st century!’ But look out because the devil is present! The devil is here… even in the 21st century! And we mustn’t be naïve, right? We must learn from the Gospel how to fight against Satan.”
2) “When one does not profess Jesus Christ, one professes the worldliness of the devil.”
3) “The Devil attacks the family so much. That demon does not love it and seeks to destroy it. May the Lord bless the family. May He make it strong in this crisis, in which the devil wishes to attack it.”
4) “It is enough to open a newspaper and we see that around us there is the presence of evil, the Devil is at work. But I would like to say in a loud voice ‘God is stronger.’ Do you believe this, that God is stronger?”
5) “Let us ask the Lord for the grace to take these things seriously. He came to fight for our salvation. He won against the devil! Please, let us not do anything with the devil! He seeks to return home, to take possession of us… Do not relativize; be vigilant! And always with Jesus!”
6) “Either you are with me, says the Lord or you are against me… Jesus came to give us the freedom from the devil’s manipulation. On this note, there are no nuances. There is a battle and a battle where salvation is at play, eternal salvation. We must always be on guard, on guard against deceit, against the seduction of evil.”
7) “Note well how Jesus responds to temptation: He doesn’t dialogue with Satan, as Eve did in the terrestrial Paradise. Jesus knows well that one can’t communicate with Satan because he is so cunning. For this reason, rather than communicating, as Eve did, Jesus decides to take refuge in the Word of God and to respond with the power of this Word. Let us remind ourselves of this in the time of temptation…: not arguing with Satan, but defending ourselves with the Word of God. And this will save us.”
8) “We too have to guard the faith, guard it against darkness. Many times, moreover, it is a darkness under the guise of light. This is because the devil, as saint Paul, says, disguises himself at times as an angel of light.”
9) “Behind every rumor there is jealousy and envy. And gossip divides the community, damages the community. Rumors are the weapons of the devil.”
10) “Let us always recall that the Enemy wants to keep us separated from God and therefore instills disappointment in our hearts when we do not see our apostolic commitment instantly rewarded. Every day the devil sows the seeds of pessimism and strifes in our hearts. Let us open ourselves to the breath of the Holy Spirit, who never ceases to sow seeds of hope and confidence.”