Quotes from Pope Francis on drugs

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VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pope Francis often speaks against “the
scourge of drug trafficking” and its effects. Here are some examples:

“The scourge of drug-trafficking, which favors violence
and sows the seeds of suffering and death, requires of society as a whole an
act of courage. A reduction in the spread and influence of drug addiction will
not be achieved by a liberalization of drug use, as is currently being proposed
in various parts of Latin America. Rather, it is necessary to confront the
problems underlying the use of these drugs, by promoting greater justice,
educating young people in the values that build up life in society,
accompanying those in difficulty and giving them hope for the future. We all
need to look upon one another with the loving eyes of Christ, and to learn to
embrace those in need, in order to show our closeness, affection and love.”
— Visit to St. Francis of Assisi of the Providence of God Hospital, Rio de
Janeiro, July 24, 2013

“On the cross,
Jesus is united to the many mothers and fathers who suffer as they see their
children become victims of drug-induced euphoria.” — Way of the
Cross with young people, Rio de Janeiro, July 26, 2013

“Let me state this in the clearest terms
possible: The problem of drug use is not solved with drugs. Drug addiction is
an evil, and with evil there can be no yielding or compromise. To think that
harm can be reduced by permitting drug addicts to use narcotics in no way
resolves the problem. Attempts, however limited, to legalize so-called ‘recreational
drugs,’ are not only highly questionable from a legislative standpoint, but
they fail to produce the desired effects. Substitute drugs are not an adequate
therapy but rather a veiled means of surrendering to the phenomenon. Here I
would reaffirm what I have stated on another occasion: No to every type of drug
use. It is as simple as that. No to any kind of drug use.” — Address to 31st International Drug Enforcement Conference in Rome,
June 19, 2014

kind of war experienced by many of our societies as a result of the narcotics
trade, a war which is taken for granted and poorly fought. Drug trafficking is,
by its very nature, accompanied by trafficking in persons, money laundering,
the arms trade, child exploitation and other forms of corruption. A corruption which
has penetrated to different levels of social, political, military, artistic and
religious life, and, in many cases, has given rise to a parallel structure
which threatens the credibility of our institutions.” — Address to
the U.N. General Assembly, Sept. 25, 2015

“I urge
you not to underestimate the moral and antisocial challenge which the drug
trade represents for the youth and for Mexican society as a whole, as well as
for the church. … Only by starting with families, by drawing close and
embracing the fringes of human existence in the ravaged areas of our cities and
by seeking the involvement of parish communities, schools, community
institutions, political communities and institutions responsible for security,
will people finally escape the raging waters that drown so many, either victims
of the drug trade or those who stand before God with their hands drenched in
blood, though with pockets filled with sordid money and their consciences
deadened.” — Meeting with Mexican bishops, Mexico City, Feb. 13, 2016

understand that often it is difficult to feel your value when you are
continually exposed to the loss of friends or relatives at the hands of the
drug trade, of drugs themselves, of criminal organizations that sow terror.”
— Meeting with young people, Morelia, Mexico, Feb. 16, 2016

is radicalized in the young; they are ‘cannon fodder,’ persecuted and
threatened when they try to flee the spiral of violence and the hell of drugs.”
— Homily, Ciudad Juarez fairgrounds, Feb. 17, 2016.

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Quotes were
compiled by Gabby Maniscalco.

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