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Pope Francis: Civilization’s Progress Is Measured by Its Ability to Protect Life

© FILIPPO MONTEFORTE/AFP
El Papa Francisco besa un bebé
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Pontiff lists "scourge of abortion" as the number one contemporary attack on life

VATICAN CITY — “The degree of progress of a civilization is measured by its ability to protect life, especially in its most fragile stages.”

These were the words of Pope Francis during an audience with the Science and Life Association, who are celebrating their 10th anniversary.

The Holy Father began by thanking them for their service in promoting the protection of human life in a society marked by the negative logic of discarding.”

“The love of Christ urges us to become servants of the small ones and the elderly, of every man and every woman, through which the primordial right to life is recognized and protected,” he said.

The Pope encouraged the association to keep their gaze fixed on the sacredness of life and the human person, “so that science may truly be at the service of man, and not man at the service of science.”

Continuing his address, Pope Francis stressed that society’s progress is measured by its ability to protect life rather than technological advances. Attacks against life, he said, must never be forgotten.

“The scourge of abortion is an attack on life. Leaving our brothers on the boats in the Sicilian channel is an attack on life. Lack of health and safety at work is an attack on life because it does not respect the minimal security conditions,” the Pope said.

The 78 year-old Pontiff also cited malnutrition, terrorism, war, violence and euthanasia as attacks on human life.

Concluding his address, Pope Francis urged the association to continue their work in promoting a culture of life. He also called them to embark in fruitful dialogue with the world of science, even with those who profess to be non-believers but “remain open to the mystery of human life.”

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