He Pope Francisco asked the governments this Friday “forward-thinking” policies to increase the birth rate in Europeconsidering that “it is the main indicator to measure the hope of a people”, in his speech at the event “The General States of Birth” in Italy.
The Pope, who had already participated in the first edition of this event, returned because it is one of the issues that concern him. According to his vision, “the theme of the Nativity is central for everyone, especially for the future of Italy and Europe.”
The pope recounted two anecdotes that he has lived with women who treated their dogs like their children and that, on one occasion during the audience, when one asked him to bless “her child” and took a dog out of the baghe “lost patience” and he said: “Ma’am, so many children are hungry and you are with the puppy…”
Sitting on the stage of a Rome auditorium with the Italian Prime Minister, Giorgia Meloninoted: “The birth of children, in fact, is the main indicator to measure the hope of a people. If few are born it means there is little hope. And this not only has repercussions from an economic and social impact, but also undermines confidence in the future”.
Pope Francis referred to the data in Italy, where the lowest birth rate in history with only 393,000 new births. “It is a figure that reveals great concern for the future,” he added.
The pontiff lamented that today, “bringing children into the world is perceived as a burden on families. And this, unfortunately, conditions the mentality of the young generations, who grow up in uncertainty, when not in disappointment and fear”.
And in this way, he highlighted, “Only the richest can allow themselves, thanks to their resources, greater freedom when it comes to choosing what way of life they want. And this is unfair, as well as humiliating.”
The Pope listed the difficulties of young people to start a family: “Difficulty finding a stable job, difficulty maintaining it, prohibitively expensive houses, sky-high rents and insufficient salaries.”
But he also stressed that for women “there are almost insurmountable limitations.” “Young women are the ones who suffer the most, often forced to choose between a professional career and motherhood.or crushed by the burden of caring for their families, especially in the presence of frail elderly and dependent people,” he said.
And then, in the presence of Meloni and other ministers, the pope called for “forward-thinking policies.”
“It is necessary to tackle the problem together, without ideological fences or preconceived positions. We cannot accept that our society stops being generative and degenerates into sadness. We cannot passively accept that so many young people fight to realize their family dream and are forced to lower the bar of desire, settling for private and mediocre substitutes: earning money, aspiring to a career, traveling, jealously guarding their free time”, he asserted.
But he also pointed out that “the birth rate, as well as the reception (of migrants) should never be opposed because they are two sides of the same coin, they reveal to us how much happiness there is in the world.”
He also invited us to overcome pessimism and think “that nothing can be done to reverse the trend.”
“Hope, in effect, challenges us to get going to find solutions that configure a society in accordance with the historical moment in which we live, a time of crisis marked by so many injustices,” he added.
And he concluded by encouraging collaboration in “the great task of to regenerate hope, to launch processes that give life to Italy, Europe and the world”.
(With information from EFE)
Pope Francis denounced persecutions against Christians and said that now there are more martyrs than in the first centuries
Pope Francis could meet with President Zelensky in the Vatican
Pope Francis assured that the Vatican participates in a peace mission for Ukraine