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Pope Francis says choosing pets over babies is ‘a form of selfishness’

Pope Francis arrives for his weekly general audience in the Paul VI Hall, at the Vatican,...
Pope Francis arrives for his weekly general audience in the Paul VI Hall, at the Vatican, Wednesday, Jan. 5, 2022.(AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)
Published: Jan. 5, 2022 at 12:22 PM MST
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(CNN) - Many people consider their fur babies as their kids. For some, those are the only children they want to have, but Pope Francis thinks that is a mistake.

“Today, we see a form of selfishness,” he said. “We see that some people do not want to have a child. Sometimes they have one, and that’s it, but they have dogs and cats that take the place of children.”

The pope said the decision to not have children is a “detriment to civilization.”

“This denial of fatherhood or motherhood diminishes us, it takes away our humanity,” he said.

The pope advised couples who cannot biologically have children to consider adoption.

“How many children in the world are waiting for someone to take care of them,” Francis said. “Having a child is always a risk, either naturally or by adoption. But it is riskier not to have them. It is riskier to deny fatherhood, or to deny motherhood, be it real or spiritual.”

He made similar comments about couples who prioritize pets in 2014.

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