When visiting a prison, Pope Francis said, "I think to myself, 'I, too, could be here.' That is, none of us can be sure that we would never commit a crime."
Christians must ask themselves whether they help people in need of salvation or whether they just keep Jesus for themselves and are deaf or indifferent to others, Pope Francis said at his morning Mass.
"It would be good for us to have an examination of conscience" and see if we are Christians who bring people to Christ or push them away, the pope said Thursday during the Mass in the chapel of the Domus Sanctae Marthae.
The economy, on a local and global level, and financial policies are called to serve the human person and promote the common good, said Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Vatican secretary of state.
"We live in a time in which, unfortunately, the prevalent economic model reveals numerous shortcomings, dysfunctions and deviations which weigh heavily on the state of the planet's health," he said Tuesday.
Couples who are seeking to marry, even those who have lived together, should value their engagement period as a time to grow in mature love and in profound knowledge of each other, said Pope Francis.
The pope urged couples not to rush into marriage. Maturation in love before marriage is a slow process, in which none of the steps should be skipped, Pope Francis told people at his weekly general audience in St. Peter's Square.
"The covenant of love between a man and a woman, a covenant for life, cannot be improvised; it cannot be done from one day to the next," he said.
The presidents of the bishops' conferences of Germany, France and Switzerland decided their preparation for the Synod of Bishops on the family could benefit from listening to theologians, biblical scholars and canon lawyers from all three countries, said the spokesman for the German bishops.
"It was a real fruitful discussion and very broad and that was important; it was not just about the hot topics" of divorce and homosexuality, Matthias Kopp, the spokesman, told Catholic News Service on Wednesday.
The Institute for the Works of Religion, commonly known as the Vatican bank, showed a large jump in profits in 2014 as it continued to winnow its accounts.
The institute reported a net profit of 69.3 million euros ($75.5 million) in 2014 compared to a 2013 net profit of 2.9 million euros.
The bulk of the profit, 55 million euros, was given to the Holy See for its operating costs.
Pope Francis told an Argentine newspaper that he never watches TV or logs on to the Internet and, perhaps not surprisingly, sleeps well.
Speaking to the newspaper La Voz Del Pueblo, the pope reflected on the little over two years since he was thrust into the global limelight.
He said the swift transition from being archbishop of Buenos Aires, Argentina, to leader of the world's 1.2 billion Catholics was somewhat of a shock.
Pope Francis urged Franciscan friars to hold true to their charism of fraternity, humility and poverty and not lose the respect they have earned over the centuries for living up to those ideals.
The more one feels small before God and in need of his mercy, "the closer we are to salvation; the more we are convinced of being sinners, the more we are willing to be saved," he said in an audience Tuesday with 200 Franciscan leaders.
More than 55,000 people have signed a petition calling for Cardinal George Pell to return to Australia after allegations that he tried to bribe the victim of a pedophile priest.
Pope Francis asked Catholics worldwide to show solidarity through their prayers for Catholics in China and for persecuted Christians over the Pentecost weekend.
The World Day of Prayer for the Church in China is observed each year on the feast of Our Lady Help of Christians, May 24, which this year falls on Pentecost.
Catholics in China invoke Mary, venerated at the Marian Shrine of Sheshan, near Shanghai, each May 24, the pope noted.