News / Europe

Pope Calls Exploitation of Nature a Sin

Pope Francis celebrates an outdoor Mass at Campobasso, Italy, on July 5, 2014.
Pope Francis celebrates an outdoor Mass at Campobasso, Italy, on July 5, 2014.

Pope Francis called for more respect for nature on Saturday, branding the destruction of South America's rain forests and other forms of environmental exploitation a sin of modern times.

In an address at the University of Molise, an agricultural and industrial region in southern Italy, Francis said the Earth should be allowed to give her fruits without being exploited.

“This is one of the greatest challenges of our time: to convert ourselves to a type of development that knows how to respect creation,” he told students, struggling farmers and laid-off workers in a university hall.

“When I look at America, also my own homeland [South America], so many forests, all cut, that have become land... that can longer give life. This is our sin, exploiting the Earth and not allowing her to give us what she has within her,” the Argentine pope said in unprepared remarks.

Francis, who took his name from Francis of Assisi, the 13th century saint seen as the patron of animals and the environment, is writing an encyclical on man's relationship with nature.

Since his election in March 2013, the leader of the world's 1.2 billion Roman Catholics has made many appeals in defense of the environment.

After the university meeting, Francis said mass for tens of thousands of people in a stadium. 

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Comment Sorting
by: saidu from: Sierra Leone
July 06, 2014 10:55 AM
Exploitation of Nature is a Sin, homosexuality and same sex marriage in the church is not a sin says the Pope. some thing is wrong some were with these statements. Are they both sinful act or which one is against Gods word.

by: Eric from: Brandt
July 05, 2014 10:31 PM
Pope Francis for President!!!

by: Raymond Martin
July 05, 2014 3:38 PM
Isn't it a contradiction that on one hand all over the world nature is being wilfully and systematically destroyed and on the other hand we expect to receive everything from nature bountifully.

God created nature for the good of mankind and unless we treat nature with respect and care there are bound to be catastrophies which will be of our own making.

by: J from: Oroville
July 05, 2014 12:13 PM
I've always loved nature and have a house full of domestic birds which we rescued some years ago.
I'm fully in agreement that nature needs to be left alone and allowed to build itself up again.
rainforests have animals and plants that cannot live anywhere else but in a rainforest. they need to be protected. God put them there for our enjoyment, not to destroy.

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