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Vatican: Pope criticizes couples who choose pets over having children

Vatican: Pope criticizes couples who choose pets over having children

The head of the Roman Catholic Church has commented on the modern parenthood during an audience at the Vatican. Pope lamented that pets often “take the place of children” in society.

The head of the world’s 1.3 billion Catholics raised the vulnerable issue during the general audience on Wednesday, saying that many people become selfish. He criticized the world’s childless dog and cat owners Wednesday, suggesting people who substitute pets for kids exhibit “a certain selfishness”. “We see that some people do not want to have a child,” pope said.

The pontiff stressed that people prefer to have dogs and cats instead of children.

“This may make people laugh but it is a reality,” Francis said at the Paul VI Hall and added that the practice becomes a denial of fatherhood and motherhood and diminishes people.

According to Pope Francis, society loses the richness of fatherhood and motherhood, and it is the country that suffers. As the pontiff understands, having pets instead of children was “another phenomenon of cultural degradation”, and that emotional relationships with pets were “easier” than the “complex” relationship between parents and children.

Italy’s population decreases

Italy’s national statistics agency Istat revealed that most Italians do want to have at least two children. The reason is much simpler than Pope believes. The modern capitalistic society gives no options to potential parents to have at least one kid, in fact.

Italy’s high levels of unemployment, the broadly badly-paid, short-term work contracts, and a lack of affordable housing and childcare mean many young people put off starting a family as they think it’s unaffordable to do so in Italy.

Since 2017, Italy shows Europe’s lowest birth rates and is set to lose a fifth of its population in 50 years. In other words, the figures marked a potential picture of crisis. The experts say that Italy’s population is expected to decrease from 59.6 million people in January 2020 to 47.6 million in 2070.

In 2012, Italy saw births fall to the lowest level since it became a nation state in 1861, to around 534,000. Since then, new record lows have been established every year. In 2020, the Italian population shrank by almost 400,000 due to the effects of the COVID-19 epidemic.