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Rome Reports

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Pope Francis: Unemployment damages the spirit

The Pope's weekly general audience is celebrated indoors during the summer. Usually, it's to escape the extreme heat. But the most recent audience was held indoors to avoid intense rain. After greeting pilgrims for a few minutes, the Pope began his catechesis. He focused on the nature of work, which he said also has a spiritual dimension. POPE FRANCIS "The commitment to work and to spiritual life are not at odds with each other. It is important to understand this! Prayer and work can and should be together in harmony, as Saint Benedict teaches. Unemployment also damages the spirit in the same way lack of prayer damages practical activity.â? Further, the Pope explained that families need to work to maintain a dignified life. He added that the family is where children should develop their work ethic. POPE FRANCIS "The family teaches about work with the parent's example. A father and mother that work are good for the family and for society.â? At the same time, the Pope denounced the way that the economy often sees families as an obstacle against productivity. He said that when this happens, humanity is fighting against itself. He lamented that this mentality seems to affect poor families more than anyone. POPE FRANCIS "When work is separated from God's covenant between man and woman, when it is separated from its spiritual quality, when it is in danger of using the logic of 'profit only' and scorns the affections of life, then degradation of the soul contaminates everything: even the air, water, grass, and food ... Civil life decays and the environment is ruined. And the consequences of this especially hit the poor and the poorest families.â? The Pope insisted that work is sacred and cannot be subject to only the logic of profit and productivity. He said that's why the loss of employment causes serious social damage. He asked the audience to pray for people that people who are currently unemployed will find work. AC/ATO CTV JM -BN Up:KLH