Materialistic World Needs to Hear From Priests, Says Cardinal Martino

ROME, FEB. 12, 2004 ( In a world “sick of materialism,” a priest is called to proclaim the truth of God’s loving presence in human history, says Cardinal Renato Martino.

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The president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace delivered that message Wednesday in a homily during a Mass celebrated at the Portuguese College of Rome on the 150th anniversary of the apparition of the Virgin of Lourdes.

The cardinal listed the negative consequences when the world gives in to the temptation of materialism: “Idolatry of money, cult of the body, contempt for human life, unbridled quest for pleasure, indifference toward others.”

Having heard the proclamation that God is present in human history, “the marginalized, who know they are loved by him and in him, again find courage, dignity, and hope,” Cardinal Martino said.

“God is present in the history of those responsible for, and the victims of, the spreading consumer civilization,” the Vatican official added. “He wants to free man from the slavery of things and place him incessantly on the path of love — of God and of brothers — with a spirit of purity, poverty and simplicity.”

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