Vatican City, Jan 11 (AFP) Pope Francis today took aim at
the modern world's obsessions with power, success and beauty,
citing the example of a woman who had an abortion to preserve
her looks.In an anecdote he said dated from his time as Bishop of
Buenos Aires, Francis recounted the story of a a very
beautiful woman who was inordinately proud of how she looked."She said, as if it was natural, 'Yes, I had to have an
abortion because my appearance is important'," the
80-year-old, whose papacy began in March 2013, said during his
midweek public audience."When values such as physical beauty, health become idols
to which everything must be sacrificed they create confusion
in our spirit and in our hearts."Rather than promoting life, they drive us towards death,"
he added in comments that also targeted "power, success and
vanity with their illusions of eternity and omnipotence."
Catholic teaching considers abortion as akin to the most
heinous of murders.Francis does not waver from that line but has authorised
priests to absolve women who have had terminations, something
which only a bishop could previously do.