In an exclusive interview published in La Stampa newspaper Sunday, Pope Francis has called for more regulation of global economic markets. He rejected the criticisms of him challenging capitalism as Marxist. The interview is from a chapter of an Italian book to be published later this week, “Pope Francis: This Economy Kills.”
The exclusive interview delves into the Pope's ongoing defense of the poor and seemingly social justice beliefs.
When asked about the criticism of his beliefs as “Marxist,” “communist” and “pauperism” the pope responded, “I do not know how to answer this question. I recognize that globalization has helped many people to lift themselves out of poverty, but it has many other people condemned to starve. It is true that in absolute terms the world's wealth has grown, but inequality and poverty have arisen.”
He added, “If I repeat some sermons by the first fathers of the Church in the second or third centuries about how the poor must be treated, some would accuse me of preaching a Marxist homily,” he said. “The New Testament does not condemn wealth but the idolatry of wealth.”
Pope Francis has criticized exorbitant salaries and has denounced them as symptoms of an economy based on greed.
He continued, “Markets and financial speculation cannot enjoy absolute autonomy.” Pope Francis called for a more ethical economy and better distribution of the world's resources.
“We cannot wait any longer to resolve the structural causes of poverty in order to cure our society of an illness that can only lead to new crises,” he expressed.
Conservative Catholics, primarily in the United States, have criticized Pope Francis' opinions on the economy. However, the Argentine pope has said he is simply sharing the Church's teachings.
In addition, Pope Francis has actively engaged in Latin American political events. He helped to facilitate negotiations between the United States and Cuba and has condemned the disappearance of 43 college students in Ayotzinapa, Mexico.