Saturday morning in the Sala Clementina Pope Francis received in audience the participants in the conference “What science for what life?”, which concluded yesterday in Rome.
“Your service in favour of the human person is important and encouraging”, remarked the Holy Father. “Indeed, protection of life represents a fundamental task, especially in a society afflicted by the negative throwaway logic. … To protect the person, you place two essential actions at the centre: reaching out to encounter, and encountering to support”.
“Christ's love drives us to become servants of the youngest and the elderly, of every man and woman, for whom the primordial right to life must be recognised and protected”, he continued. “The existence of the human person, to whom you dedicate your care, is also your constitutive principle; it is life in its unfathomable depth that is at the origin of and accompanies all scientific progress; it is the miracle of life that always challenges any form of scientific presumption, restoring primacy to wonder and beauty. … We reassert that a just society recognises the primacy of the right to life from conception to natural end. However, I would like us to go beyond this, and to think carefully about the time that joins the beginning to the end. Therefore, recognising the inestimable value of human life, we must also reflect on the use we make of it”.
Francis emphasised that the measure of the progress of a civilisation is “its capacity to protect life, especially in its most fragile phases, rather than the spread of technological tools. When we speak about man, we must never forget all the assaults on the sacredness of human life. The scourge of abortion is an assault on life. Leaving our brothers to die on boats in the Sicilian straits is an assault on life. Death at work due to a failure to respect the minimum safety requirements is an assault on life. Death due to hunger is an assault on life. Terrorism, war, violence are all assaults on life, as is is euthanasia”.
“I encourage you to relaunch a culture of life, that knows how to establish networks of trust and reciprocity, and how to offer prospects of peace, mercy and communion”, he concluded.