Pope Francis gestures as he leads the Angelus from the window of his studio overlooking St. Peter's Square at the Vatican Aug. 4. (CNS photo/Stefano Rellandini, Reuters)
Pope Francis gestures as he leads the Angelus from the window of his studio overlooking St. Peter's Square at the Vatican Aug. 4. (CNS photo/Stefano Rellandini, Reuters)

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pope Francis denounced consumerism as a poison that threatens true happiness, which comes from membership in the church. The pope made his remarks Aug. 4, before praying the Angelus with a noontime crowd in St. Peter's Square.

“The encounter with the living Jesus, in the great family that is the church, fills the heart with joy, because it fills it with true life, a profound goodness that does not pass away or decay,” he said. “But this experience must face the daily vanity, the poison of emptiness that insinuates itself into our society based on profit and having (things), that deludes young people with consumerism,” he said.

“Young people are particularly sensitive to the emptiness of meaning and values that surrounds them,” he said. “And they, unfortunately, pay the consequences.”

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J.D. Long-Garcia is the former editor of The Catholic Sun. He joined the staff in 2004. J.D., a lay Dominican, studied journalism and psychology at Arizona State University, philosophy at the Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology, and theology at the Graduate Theological Union. He's taught classes at the Kino Institute, worked as an outreach intern at All Saints Catholic Newman Center, led a deanery confirmation program in Berkeley, Calif., and served as a catechist for children of various ages. He was born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.