Pope Francis
Source: The Indian Express

Pope Francis has expressed his concerns on the growing populism and nationalism. In his new encyclical letter, he wrote, “instances of a myopic, extremist, resentful and aggressive nationalism are on the rise.”

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The Pope wrote a 43000-word letter and it was released on Sunday. He wrote,

“In some countries, a concept of popular and national unity influenced by various ideologies is creating new forms of selfishness and a loss of the social sense under the guise of defending national interests.”

He warned that this is giving rise to growing xenophobia, narrowmindedness, and selfishness. He denounced the idea of populism and nationalism. He also lamented the people who feel encouraged by their faith to support the verities of violent nationalism, xenophobia, contempt, and mistreatment of others.

He termed this as a lack of gratuitousness. Touching upon the issue of immigrants, he said that these people are considered usurpers and nothing to offer. The Pontiff continued that this leads to the belief that the poor are dangerous and useless.

He wrote,

“Lack of concern for the vulnerable can hide behind a populism that exploits them demagogically for its own purposes or liberalism that serves the economic interests of the powerful.”

He said that populism defies the word ‘People’ which talk about communitarian aspirations and shared goal. Expressing his concerns, he said that the leaders who promote unhealthy populism can exploit the culture of the people.

However, Pope Francis did not name in any leader who is taking these extreme measures.