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PETA Asks Pope Francis to Be a Saint to Animals

Written by Michelle Kretzer | March 21, 2013

Newly elected Pope Francis is already making clear that his focus will be to embrace the disadvantaged. He chose his papal title in homage to St. Francis of Assisi, a renowned advocate for the poor and the patron saint of animals and the environment. PETA has written to His Holiness to congratulate him and to offer a couple of simple ways that he can follow in St. Francis’ footsteps as a champion for animals. Because of the unholy abuse on factory farms and in slaughterhouses, we’ve asked Pope Francis to ensure that no factory-farmed meat, eggs, or dairy products are served at the Vatican and to offer as many meat-free meals as possible. 

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Previous popes have expressed concern for animals and their well-being. Pope John Paul II was a noted animal advocate who declared that animals are “as near to God as men are.” He also maintained that animals “possess a soul and men must love and feel solidarity with our smaller brethren.” Pope Francis’ predecessor Pope Benedict XVI felt that “[a]nimals, too, are God’s creatures. … [T]his degrading of living creatures to a commodity seems to me in fact to contradict the relationship of mutuality that comes across in the Bible.”

God clearly instructs his followers to “love one another” (John 13:34), “be merciful” (Luke 6:36), and not to harm one another (Isaiah 11:9).

Hopefully, Pope Francis will continue to guide Catholics down the compassionate path that his namesake, St. Francis of Assisi, set out on so many years ago.

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  • Krishna says:

    I respect pope Francis, bcz he is more modern in thinking than his predecessors. Still, I can’t comprehend Popes eating meat and lthe like. Once you know how meat arrives to your plate, compassionate s should shun it. In eastern religions, most saints and spiritual people and monks are vegetarians. I always feel, pope should promote and practice vegetarianism.

  • natalie saunders says:

    Has the pope replied in any way?

  • Ann lewis says:

    Please, Pope Francis, can you speak up for the ‘voiceless’ elephants who are being slaughtered to near extinction for their ivory? Many religious artifacts have been (and still are) made from ivory. Your Holiness and the Vatican could take a firm lead in closing down this particular market. Every little step in the right direction will be a help.

  • Joan Herstein says:

    I am absolutely delighted that PETA has reached out to the Pope, it seems to me that he will set a new tone for the Catholic church that will encourage people to treat all animals with love and compassion as they are the most vulnerable amongst us.

  • April says:

    I would like to know what PETA believes about the use of birth control? It is all tested on animals–it is not necessary for a persons health–yet I have never heard PETA boycotting the planned parenthood or makers of birth control pills or devices! Please let me know your official stance! Thank you!

  • Barb Falls says:

    Animals are all of God’s creatures. They are beautiful and deserve peace and happiness. Thank you Pope Francis for your compassion for all Animals.

  • Chantal Rafaelle Lafrance says:

    I pray his soul be as beautiful as Gandhi’s…

  • Riesa Larson says:

    No one in Power seems to care about God Creatures, the Animals.. Mahatma Gandhi was a gentle caring man who loved animals and always spoke to people to be kind to these creatures of God who have no voice. We must be a voice for the voiceless.. We are asking you, a Representative of God, to please speak against the cruelty that exists now to Animals..China is skinning dogs and cats while they are still alive, can you even imagine the pain and torture that these gently creatures are experiencing.. Please not to mention all the countries anymore that are torturing animals for the fun of it, for entertainment, for profit.. Its wrong, and it must stop..

  • Danusia Bourdon says:

    St Fancis of Asis has always been my ‘favourite’ saint because as a child I learnt of his compassion for animals, he is always on my prayer list when I ask for his help to stop the suffering of all helpless animals. I think it’s wonderful that PETA has written to our new Pope, he seems a very compassionate man and his prayers and actions will hopefully encourage all human beings to respect animals and show them the love they deserve.

  • Beckie Uhl says:

    Hopefully someone will inform Pope Francis of the cruelty brought on by Catholic groups that hold ages old celebrations that involve cutting off the testicles of the bulls before they are put to death. This is one example of several celebrations where animals are abused. Bull fighting in countries where the populations consist mainly of Catholic members should also be outlawed. There is no compassion towards the bulls.

  • Carrie says:

    Love this! The pope has already made waves as a pope of the people. Now let’s see him be the pope of the animals!

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