Pope Francis lashes out at his enemies inside the Catholic Church in extraordinary outburst: 'Say it to my face!'

Pope Francis has lashed out at critics of him from within the church and told them to say it to his face.
Pope Francis has lashed out at critics of him from within the church and told them to say it to his face.

He compared criticism of him to a 'rash' as pressure mounts against him

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Pope Francis has lashed out at critics of him from within the church and told them to say it to his face.

He described mounting criticism of him from Conservative Catholics as a "rash", telling those speaking against him to say it “to my face”.

The Pope challenged those opposed to his “mercy-over-dogma” style as criticism increases only a month after the death of Pope Benedict.

Many attribute Pope Benedict to keeping hot tempers at bay, stopping critics from speaking out.

But Benedict’s own former secretary Georg Ganswein said Francis’ decision to restrict the use of traditional Latin Mass had “broke the heart” of the former pope.

He compared the criticism to a “rash that bothers you a bit”, adding ““The only thing I ask is that they do it to my face, because that’s how we all grow, right?”

It comes as the Pope last week called for an end to violence in Peru, where nearly 50 people have been killed during anti-government demonstrations in the past few weeks.

"No to violence, regardless of where it originates. No more deaths," the Argentine pope said in Spanish at his weekly address to thousands of people in St. Peter's Square.

Next week, he will head to the Democratic Republic of Congo and South Sudan, two countries battling with conflict and poverty.

It will be his third visit to sub-Saharan Africa since he became pope in 2013.