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Pope in New Interview: Indifference Is Today’s Quarantine of Choice, to Protect Ourselves From ‘Virus’ of Reality

Speaking to “Studia Moralia,” Says From the Periphery, ‘You See the Raw, Real Reality, Without Any Mask’

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“I believe that moral theology must help to raise awareness of those” sins “that the world has now incorporated into its normality and no longer perceives them as such,” Pope Francis said in an interview with “Studia Moralia”, the scientific journal of the Alphonsian Academy. The first part of the interview was published on the magazine’s website.

Pope Francis invites careful reflection on some particularly urgent moral issues amid the pandemic and in the midst of social transformations.

“We must all act responsibly, whether or not we want a more human humanity, without slaves, without exploited men and women. We must ask ourselves whether we still want nations that exploit other nations. […,] It is unacceptable that this way of thinking and living remains the same after the great crisis of the pandemic.

Francis speaks again of peripheries and the globalization of indifference.

“Reality is better seen from the suburbs. From the center, you have a sweetened, distorted vision, while from the periphery, you see the raw, real reality, without any mask.”

“Indifference today is a way of defending oneself. It is a quarantine that I choose for myself, to protect myself from the virus of reality.”

Finally, Pope Francis goes back to explaining what “Church going out” means for him, that is, “going right to the peripheries.” But in a practical, real sense.

“We need to open up to a concrete encounter with existential peripheries without falling into the trap of making theoretical reflections that have never really encountered the drama and beauty of the reality.”

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Deborah Castellano Lubov

Deborah Castellano Lubov is Senior Vatican & Rome Correspondent for ZENIT; author of 'The Other Francis' ('L'Altro Francesco') featuring interviews with those closest to the Pope and preface by Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Parolin (currently published in 5 languages); Deborah is also NBC & MSNBC Vatican Analyst. She often covers the Pope's travels abroad, often from the Papal Flight (including for historic trips such as to Abu Dhabi and Japan & Thailand), and has also asked him questions on the return-flight press conference on behalf of the English-speaking press present. Lubov has done much TV & radio commentary, including for NBC, Sky, EWTN, BBC, Vatican Radio, AP, Reuters and more. She also has contributed to various books on the Pope and has written for various Catholic publications. For 'The Other Francis': or

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