Pope Francis brushes off accusations he “played it safe” with Easter mass tactics

(Photo: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

(Photo: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

Pope Francis has hit back at critics today, brushing off accusations that he “played it safe” with his tactics for today’s traditional Easter mass in St. Peter’s Square, Rome.

Religious scholars had criticised the Argentine for what they described as a “by the numbers” mass, as well as his apparent use of “the old reliables” such as condemning violence and encouraging compassion for those in need.

Speaking in a post-mass press conference, the 266th Pope of the Roman Catholic Church rejected the criticism, insisting that “only God can judge me”.

“It’s very easy for these couch Pontiffs to talk a lot, but mass is much simpler from the comfort of one’s home,” said the 79-year-old, whose real is Jorge Mario Bergoglio. “I’d like to see a few of them up on the altar and see how brave they’d be then.”

“These people love to sit in their television studios with their fancy screens and point out where I should have improved, what Gospel I should have chosen and what hymns would have been appropriate. They can talk all they want, I answer only to the man upstairs and as long as he’s happy then so am I.”

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