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Pope Francis called Friday during a trip to South Korea for Catholics to combat the allure of materialism. In the newly rich and hyper-competitive country, that might be a hard sell. Far from being considered an evil, the trappings of wealth are often linked here to the hard work, sacrifice and gritty persistence of generations who hustled their nation out of war, dictatorship and poverty into an Asian powerhouse. Francis made the call during his first public Mass in Asia. He received a boisterous welcome from tens of thousands of young Asians gathered for a Catholic festival in the central city of Daejeon. During his homily, Francis urged the faithful to reject “inhuman” economic policies that disenfranchise the poor and “the spirit of unbridled competition which generates selfishness and strife.”



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