The Surprising Method Pope Francis Used To Share His Latest Message With The World

"We can only build the future by standing together, including everyone."

Pope Francis surprised the internet on Tuesday evening with a video message from Vatican City for this year's TED conference in Vancouver. Yes, you read that right — the Pope gave a TED talk.

Francis embraced this year's theme, "The Future You," by sharing a message of compassion and togetherness to all citizens of the world, including those in power. "The future is made of yous, it is made of encounters, because life flows through our relations with others," he said, as translated from Italian.

His words hold powerful meaning at a frequently divisive time around the world:

"I would love it if this meeting could help to remind us that we all need each other, none of us is an island, an autonomous and independent 'I,' separated from the other, and we can only build the future by standing together, including everyone."

The Pope's embrace of technology to share his message came with a hope that scientific advancements could bring humanity closer together. "How wonderful would it be if the growth of scientific and technological innovation would come along with more equality and social inclusion," he said. "How wonderful would it be, while we discover faraway planets, to rediscover the needs of the brothers and sisters orbiting around us."


He warned against a "culture of waste," which he said too often puts products ahead of people, and looked to "solidarity" as the solution, drawing on the Parable of the Good Samaritan to emphasize that "the other has a face," and is "not a statistic or a number."

Francis went on to speak poetically about the concept of hope: 

Hope is a humble, hidden seed of life that, with time, will develop into a large tree. It is like some invisible yeast that allows the whole dough to grow, that brings flavor to all aspects of life. And it can do so much, because a tiny flicker of light that feeds on hope is enough to shatter the shield of darkness. A single individual is enough for hope to exist, and that individual can be you. And then there will be another "you," and another "you," and it turns into an "us." And so, does hope begin when we have an "us?" No. Hope began with one "you." When there is an "us," there begins a revolution.

"Tenderness is not weakness; it is fortitude," Francis said as he closed his talk. He stressed that tenderness, as well as humility, are necessary qualities for those in power.

"The future of humankind isn't exclusively in the hands of politicians, of great leaders, of big companies," he made sure to remind us. "Yes, they do hold an enormous responsibility. But the future is, most of all, in the hands of those people who recognize the other as a 'you' and themselves as part of an 'us.'"

The Pope continues to practice this philosophy himself, most recently by opening a free laundry service in Rome for the city's homeless.

Watch the Pope's full remarks below, with English subtitles available:

(H/T: CNN)


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