Pope Francis on the way home: “Terrorism grows when there is not another option, and while at the center of the global economic system there is the God of money and not the person”

August 1, 2016

From Josh McElwee’s coverage of the Pope’s discussion with the press in the plane from Krakow to Rome…

“Terrorism grows when there is not another option, and while at the center of the global economic system there is the God of money and not the person, man and woman,” the pontiff continued.

“This is the first terrorism,” said Francis. “You have chased away the miracle of creation, man and woman, and you have put in its place money. This is a base-level terrorism against all humanity. Let’s think about it.”

Earlier in the day, at the final mass for the World Youth Day festival, Pope Francis asked global young people to show the world a new way, telling more than a million pilgrim youths gathered on a vast plain here to proclaim hope “with a smile and open arms” and be the vanguard of a “new humanity” that breaks down borders.

The pontiff told the youths that God is demanding “real courage” from them: the courage to exercise the power of mercy and forgiveness to heal the world.  “How truly hard it is to welcome Jesus, how hard it is to accept a ‘God who is rich in mercy,'” the pope said.  “People will try to block you, to make you think that God is distant, rigid and insensitive, good to the good and bad to the bad,” Francis warned. “Instead, our heavenly father ‘makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good.'”

“He demands of us real courage: the courage to be more powerful than evil by loving everyone, even our enemies,” the pope continued. “People may laugh at you because you believe in the gentle and unassuming power of mercy. But do not be afraid.”  “People may judge you to be dreamers, because you believe in a new humanity, one that rejects hatred between peoples, one that refuses to see borders as barriers and can cherish its own traditions without being self-centered or small-minded,” he told the youths.

“Don’t be discouraged!” he exhorted. “With a smile and open arms, you proclaim hope and you are a blessing for our one human family, which here you represent so beautifully!”Addressing the story of Zacchaeus and his social rejection, “Jesus looks beyond the faults and sees the person. He does not stop before past evil, but sees future good.””His gaze remains constant, even when it is not met it seeks the way of unity and communion,” said the pope. “In no case does it halt at appearances, but looks to the heart.””With this gaze of Jesus, you can help bring about another humanity, without looking for acknowledgement but seeking goodness for its own sake, content to maintain a pure heart and to fight peaceably for honesty and justice,” said Francis.