Pope denounces populism as fertile ground to foment anti-Semitism
search

Pope denounces populism as fertile ground to foment anti-Semitism

Pontiff says doctrine that has gained popularity in Western world is born of ‘selfish indifference,’ gives rapid rise to hatred

Pope Francis stands at the window of the Apostolic palace overlooking St. Peter's Square during the weekly Angelus prayer on January 19, 2020, in the Vatican. (Alberto PIZZOLI / AFP)
Pope Francis stands at the window of the Apostolic palace overlooking St. Peter's Square during the weekly Angelus prayer on January 19, 2020, in the Vatican. (Alberto PIZZOLI / AFP)

VATICAN CTIY — Pope Francis on Monday denounced populism, saying it is born of “selfish indifference” and provides fertile terrain for hatred, including anti-Semitism.

Francis spoke while meeting with a delegation from the Simon Wiesenthal Center, a human rights organization that fights anti-Semitism.

The pontiff noted that in 2016, during a pilgrimage to Poland, he prayed at the site of the Nazi concentration camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau.

Francis decried the recent “barbaric resurgence of anti-Semitism,” and said that populism provides a fertile terrain where “hate rapidly grows.”

Much of Europe, where populist parties have gained traction, has seen an uptick in anti-Semitic incidents.

Francis said that by encouraging integration and mutual understanding, hatred can be countered.

He added: “I’ll never tire of firmly condemning every form of anti-Semitism.”

In November, Francis denounced the “inhuman, un-Christian” rebirth of anti-Semitism, lamenting its resurgence, after the world thought the “brutalities” of the Holocaust were over.

read more:
comments