In an interview with Portugal-based Radio Renascença aired yesterday, Pope Francis declared that the current refugee crisis in Europe is being caused by a “bad, unjust” socio-economic system that worships “the god of money.”
In the interview, where questions were posed in Portuguese and the responses were given by Pope Francis in Spanish, the pontiff said coveting money will bring about both human and ecological ruin:
“This is the tip of the iceberg. We see these refugees, these poor people who are escaping from war, escaping from hunger, but that’s the tip of the iceberg. But underlying that is the cause, and the cause is a socio-economic system that is bad, unjust, because within an economic system, within everything, within the world, speaking of the ecological problem, within the socio-economic society, in politics, the person always has to be the center. And today’s dominant economic system has removed the person from the center, and at the center is the god of money. It’s the fashionable god today. I mean, there are statistics. I don’t remember very well, but — this is not exact and I could be making a mistake— 17% of the population has 80% of the wealth.”
Pope Francis said that refugees from rural areas are being “deforested” and driven into big cities:
“Why are ‘favelas’ (shantytowns) formed in big cities?” It’s the people who come from the country because they have been deforested. They have made a mono-cultivation. They have no work, and they go to big cities.”
Ultimately, the world “is at war against itself, the Pope declared:
“Today, the world is at war, is at war against itself. That is, the world is at war -- as I say -- a war in parts, piecemeal. But it is also at war against the earth, because it’s destroying the earth, that is, our common home. The environment, the glaciers are melting. In the Arctic, the polar bear goes increasingly northward to survive."
Read full interview translated by the Catholic News Agency.