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Pope calls on Christian artists to create beautiful works as a ‘spark of hope’

December 07, 2016

In a December 6 message to the 11 pontifical academies on the occasion of a joint meeting, Pope Francis spoke about beauty in the midst of cities.

Reflecting on the meeting’s theme—“sparks of beauty to give a more human visage to our cities”—Pope Francis recalled Pope Benedict XVI’s 2009 address to artists and said that parishes in poor neighborhoods should be “in their simplicity … oases of beauty, peace, acceptance.”

Christian artists are called to “create works of art that bring us, in the language of beauty, a sign, a spark of hope and trust there where people seem to give in to indifference and ugliness,” Pope Francis continued.

He added:

Taking care of people, starting with the smallest and weakest, and of their daily bonds necessarily also means taking care of the environment in which they live. Small gestures, simple actions, small sparks of beauty and love can heal, “mending” the often lacerated and divided human fabric [of society], as well as that of a city and of the environment, representing a concrete alternative to indifference and cynicism.

 
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