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papal lingustics

Pope Francis wants to change the Lord's Prayer

Pope Francis is something of a revolutionary, papally speaking. He's politically outspoken, he's implored the Catholic Church to welcome divorcees and the gay community — and now, the BBC reports, he wants to change the Lord's Prayer.

Turns out, Francis is just a real stickler for semantics. The pope told TV2000, an Italian Catholic TV channel, that the current phrasing of "lead us not into temptation" unfairly suggests that God guides humans to sin. His solution, which is apparently already used by France's Roman Catholic Church, is to change the phrase to "do not let us fall into temptation."

"It is I who fall," Francis said. "It is not God who throws me into temptation and then sees how I fell. It's Satan who leads us into temptation, that's his department."

While linguistically speaking, the pope has a point, he runs the risk of undoing centuries of tradition for praying Catholics. Reverend Ian Paul, an Anglican theologian, told The Guardian: "If you tweak the translation, you risk disrupting the pattern of communal prayer. You fiddle with it at your peril."