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Pope warns kids against celebrity culture

Down with that sort of thing, says Benedict XVI.

Image: Peter Macdiarmid/PA Wire/Press Association Images

THE POPE HAS ADVISED young people against the lure of celebrity culture on the second day of his four day trip to the UK.

The pope addressed some 4,000 pupils at a school in Twickenham this morning, warning them that fame and money wouldn’t bring them happiness, according to the Guardian:

We live in a celebrity culture and young people are often encouraged to model themselves on figures from the world of sport or entertainment.

The Key to it is very simple – true happiness is to be found in God.

He urged the students not to settle for second best, but to strive to become saints.

Benedict is due to hold a private meeting with the Archbishop of Canterbury later today before addressing a crowd at Westminster Hall. Attendees are expected to include the former prime minister Gordon Brown, Tony Blair and Margaret Thatcher.

The private meeting is considered an historical event in showing unity between the two churches.

Nazi controversy

Comments made by Benedict regarding atheism yesterday drew criticism from humanist groups. The BBC reports that the Pope spoke about Britain’s efforts against the “Nazi tyranny that wished to eradicate God from society” before saying:

As we reflect on the sobering lessons of atheist extremism of the 20th century, let us never forget how the exclusion of God, religion and virtue from public life leads ultimately to a truncated vision of man and of society and thus a reductive vision of a person and his destiny.

The British Humanist Association criticised the comments, saying that the idea that the atheism of the Nazis influenced their extremism or fuelled intolerance in Britain “is a terrible libel against those who do not believe in God”.

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