VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis says the coronavirus pandemic has proved that our own health depends on the health of others and the environment, and exploiting nature means exploiting others.
Francis reiterated his insistence of the interconnectedness of people and the planet during his general audience Wednesday, held in a Vatican courtyard with the faithful spaced apart to limit contagion.
Francis says if people are unable to contemplate the beauty and majesty of nature without exploiting it, they will be similarly unable to contemplate others without taking advantage of them. He says: “He who lives to exploit nature ends up exploiting people and treating them like slaves. This is a universal law.”
Francis is expected to elaborate on the themes of solidarity, fraternity and care for creation in an encyclical he’s expected to sign Oct. 3 on living in the post-coronavirus world.