Pope Francis says he will be “the greatest pope” of his time.
He said he wants to make the “end of suffering” a “greater goal than the conquest of territory.”
Speaking at the Vatican on Sunday, Francis said he would use his role as “the guardian of the sacred and of the family” to “restore the dignity of the person and to preserve the dignity, the honor and the dignity” of Catholics.
He added that the Catholic Church was not a “religion of death.”
Francis also said he hoped to help those in need, saying the pope had met with the homeless in the Vatican and would continue to do so.
He said he was “deeply troubled” by the death of the two children of a young Argentine woman who had been held hostage by the government of President Mauricio Macri, but he did not specify how.
Macri was accused of using his power to extort money from families of the victims of his government’s crackdown on human rights.
The pope, who was born in Argentina and has lived in Argentina since 1982, has been accused of being a pawn in a larger geopolitical game.
Last year, he became the first pope to publicly acknowledge the Church’s role in climate change.
He has also repeatedly called for a halt to mass killings in Africa and elsewhere.
But Francis also has criticized the Catholic church for its role in the slave trade, accusing some of being “anti-Christian.”
He said that many Catholic priests and bishops had participated in the trade and that some had “totally neglected the suffering of the slave holders.”
The Vatican is facing widespread criticism from human rights groups, who say the pope’s views on climate change have left many in Africa in the dark.
A group of nuns, led by the nuns of St. Francis Xavier in Sao Paulo, Brazil, issued a statement in October saying they would stop working in the diocese unless the pope acknowledged climate change as a human-caused problem.
“In my life, I have experienced and been aware of the cruel and inhuman treatment of African slaves,” they wrote.
“This has become clear to me in the past decades, but it has not occurred to me until now.
I am no longer willing to participate in the exploitation of the African people.”