Idols always disappoint. They are temporary consolations, false gods that in the long run bring neither consolation nor happiness.
In his sixth catechesis on hope, the pope recalled the false gods of modern times: power, drugs, fame. Idols that tempt by promising happiness in moments of difficulty, but in the long run deceive the user.
"Idols always disappoint. They are fantasies. They are not reality."
He said that idols actually steal and take away freedom. Furthermore, they make us capable of making serious mistakes.
"It is sad to hear, and it hurts in the soul, what I once heard in the other diocese years ago. A woman, a good woman, very beautiful, very beautiful, who boasted of her beauty, and stated this as if it were normal. 'I had to have an abortion, because my figure is very important.' This; these are the idols. They take you on the wrong path and do not give happiness."
At the conclusion of the catechesis the pope gave an unprecedented warning against scammers who take advantage of the pilgrims at the Vatican.
With a entry ticket in his hand he firmly stated that participating in papal events is free and that the people who make the pilgrims pay are criminals.
"This is free. People come here, without paying, because this is everyone's house. Whoever says this and makes others pay commits a crime."
It is not the first time the Vatican has reminded pilgrims that the tickets to enter the Audience or liturgical celebrations with the pope are free.
There are few public or official events throughout the remainder of this week, except for the upcoming meeting with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Saturday. A few days ago, Pope Francis asked Palestinians and Israelis for courage to write a new page in their united history.