"So many Christians are like this, and these people scandalize others," Francis said during morning Mass at Casa Santa Marta, CNN reported, quoting Vatican Radio. "How many times have we heard — all of us, around the neighborhood and elsewhere — 'But to be a Catholic like that, it's better to be an atheist.' It is that: scandal.""But what is scandal? Scandal is saying one thing and doing another."
The Vatican later issued a note clarifying that the pontiff was simply saying that God's grace is free to all, even atheists, CNN reported.
Francis' sermon was an extension of Thursday’s Mass readings, which include a passage from the Gospel of Mark. In it, Jesus says it is better to be drowned than to cause others to sin.