In an interview granted with the Spanish-language magazine "La Vanguardia" on June 13, 2014, Pope Francis answered several questions, including this one about the present economic system: “What can the Church do to reduce the growing inequality between the rich and the poor?” Here is what the Holy Father replied:
It’s proven that with the food that is left over, we could feed the people who are hungry. When you see photographs of undernourished kids in different parts of the world, you take your head in your hand, it is incomprehensible. I believe that we are in a world economic system that isn’t good. At the center of all economic systems must be man, man and woman, and everything else must be in service of this man. But we have put money at the center, the god of money. We have fallen into a sin of idolatry, the idolatry of money.
The economy is moved by the ambition of having more and, paradoxically, it feeds a throwaway culture. Young people are thrown away when their natality is limited. The elderly are also discarded because they don’t serve any use anymore; they don’t produce, this passive class… In throwing away the kids and elderly, the future of a people is thrown away because the young people are going to push forcefully forward, and because the elderly give us wisdom. They have the memory of that people and they have to pass it on to the young people. And now also it is in style to throw the young people away with unemployment. The rate of unemployment is very worrisome to me, which in some countries is over 50%. Someone told me that 75 million young Europeans under 25 years of age are unemployed. That is an atrocity. But we are discarding an entire generation to maintain an economic system that can’t hold up anymore, a system that to survive must make war, as the great empires have always done. But as a Third World War can’t be done, they make zonal wars. What does this mean? That they produce and sell weapons, and with this the balance sheets of the idolatrous economies, the great world economies that sacrifice man at the feet of the idol of money.