Pope laments direction of society during mass for Our Lady of Guadalupe

During the service, Pope Francis lamented the exploitation and ill-treatment of thousands of children, young people, women and elderly people in the Americas.

The ceremony honoring Our Lady of Guadalupe, patroness of the Americas was held earlier today in the St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican. (Photo: EFE)
English 12/12/2016 15:06 EFE Vatican Actualizada 15:06
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Pope Francis celebrated mass on Monday evening honoring the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe in St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican.

During the service, Pope Francis lamented the fact that the Americas have grown accustomed to how thousands of children, women and elderly people are treated in the continent.

“It's difficult to celebrate the current direction of human society when we see that our beloved American continent has gotten used to seeing thousand and thousands of children and young people living and begging on the streets,” he said during the mass for the patroness of the Americas.

The pope, during his sermon in Spanish, drew attention to young people “who sleep in train stations, in the metro or wherever they manage to find a place without getting caught.”

“Children and young people are exploited or forced to make a few coins by cleaning our windshields at intersections, and they feel like there is no place for them in this world,” he said.

The Pope from Argentina also drew attention to families in the Americas who “are deeply affected by the pain of seeing their own children fall victims to merchants of death.”

In addition, he said it's very “hard” to see how “it's become normal to exclude our elderly” by forcing them to “live out their days excluded from society because of the mere fact that they're not considered productive members of society.”

He drew attention to women, who he says “are victims of several forms of violence inside and outside of their own homes,” since the time they're children or adolescents.

“The situation many young girls live in today can paralyze us, make us question our faith, and most importantly, our hope, our way of seeing and confronting our future,” warned the Pope, who recommended facing these causes with “strong faith.”

During the service, the Pope warned about a society that's becoming increasingly “marked by signs of division and fragmentation.”

This, in his opinion, leaves many out of the picture, especially those he says are the most vulnerable in our society.

“A society which likes to boast of its scientific and technological advances but which has turned a blind and insensitive eye to the thousands of faces which get lost on the way, excluded by the blinding pride of a few,” said the pope.

Pope Francis, the first Latin American to hold the sacred position, celebrated today for the third year in a row the Mass for the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, for whom the Pope has a strong devotion to and prayed for during his visit to Mexico in February of this year.

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