Pope Francis Warns Against Materialism In First South Korea Public Mass

In this first public mass in Asia, Pope Francis spoke to 50,000 people and told them they need to strive to eliminate materialism from their lives.

The Pope also said to “reject inhumane economic models which create new forms of poverty and marginalize workers, and the culture of death which devalues the image of God, the God of life, and violates the dignity of every man, woman and child.”

Vatican Radio said the Pope’s message focused on the allure of materialism that is so worshipped and praised by the world.  He said the spirit of unbridled competition that feeds materialism is the engine driving selfishness and strife.

The Pope took time to give special praise to the Korean church because they did not have a track record to build on and when they found Catholic books imported from China “were able to go it alone.”

He also offered blessings for 10,000 Koreans that had been martyred in the 18th and 19th centuries trying to bring Catholicism into the region.  He said the martyrs gave a “noble tradition” and “legacy” that needs to be continued by taking care of “the poor, the needy and the vulnerable in our midst.”