Pope Francis called Friday for governments to redistribute wealth to the poor in a new spirit of generosity to help curb the "economy of exclusion" that is taking hold today.
Railing against an “economy of exclusion,” Francis called for a state-led global initiative to close the widening gap between rich and poor through redistribution.
Francis made the appeal during a speech to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the heads of major UN agencies who are meeting in Rome this week.
Latin America's first pope has frequently lashed out at the injustices of capitalism and the global economic system that excludes so much of humanity.
On Friday, Francis called for the United Nations to promote a "worldwide ethical mobilisation" of solidarity with the poor in a new spirit of generosity.
“Specifically, this involves challenging all forms of injustices and resisting the economy of exclusion, the throwaway culture and the culture of death which nowadays sadly risk becoming passively accepted,” Francis said.
He said a more equal form of economic progress can be had through "the legitimate redistribution of economic benefits by the state, as well as indispensable cooperation between the private sector and civil society."
Francis had a similar message to the World Economic Forum in January and in his apostolic exhortation "The Joy of the Gospel." That document, which denounced trickle-down economic theories as unproven and naive, provoked criticism in the US that he was Marxist.
Francis has denied he's Marxist, and spent years in Argentina battling Marxist excesses of liberation theology. But he has said from the outset that he wants a church that "is poor and for the poor" and ministers to the most marginal of society.
On Friday, he urged the UN to promote development goals that attack the root causes of poverty and hunger, protect the environment and ensure "dignified" labor for all.
"Specifically, this involves challenging all forms of injustices and resisting the economy of exclusion, the throwaway culture and the culture of death which nowadays sadly risk becoming passively accepted," he said.