Preach it Pope Francis!
Pope Francis slammed ‘deviant forms of religion’ following deadly attacks by Islamist militants in France last week which left 17 people dead.
‘Losing their freedom, people become enslaved, whether to the latest fads, or to power, money, or even deviant forms of religion,’ he said, laying the blame on ‘a culture of rejection’ which leads to ‘the breakdown of society and spawning violence and death.’
‘We see painful evidence of this in the events reported daily in the news, not least the tragic slayings which took place in Paris a few days ago,’ he said in his yearly speech to the members of the Diplomatic Corps accredited to the Holy See.
‘Religious fundamentalism, even before it eliminates human beings by perpetrating horrendous killings, eliminates God himself, turning him into a mere ideological pretext,’ he said.
Francis also denounced the ‘abominable’ kidnapping and enslavement of young girls by Boko Haram militants in Nigeria and the slaughter of ‘unspeakable brutality’ of more than 100 children by the Taliban in Pakistan.
Referring specifically to the U.S., Francis welcomed the planned closure of the Guantanamo prison and the recent U.S.-Cuba rapprochement that he himself helped facilitate.
He called for a change in attitude toward accepting refugees, noting the many unaccompanied Latin American children migrating to the U.S. are ‘are all the more at risk and in need of greater care, attention and protection.’
He said he hoped 2015 would bring progress toward a new climate change agreement, saying in a brief deviation from his text that it was ‘urgent.’
Read more: Daily Mail