In an apparent reference to Trump’s border plans, the pope said those who build walls are trying to “divide people and box them in.”
Pope Francis made a thinly veiled reference to President Donald Trump’s proposed border wall on Thursday, criticizing people who build walls instead of bridges.
The pontiff, who is visiting Panama for a global Catholic youth rally, didn’t explicitly mention Trump, but made it clear that he wants young members of his flock to be the kind of people who build bridges.
“These builders of walls that sow fear are looking to divide people and box them in,” the pope said during the opening ceremony of World Youth Day in Panama City.
“What do you want to be?” Francis asked the estimated 250,000 young people assembled for the rally.
“Builders of bridges,” his audience replied, according to a video of the ceremony published on YouTube by Vatican News.
Francis, the Catholic Church’s first Latin American pope, also praised the youth for joining together for the rally, even though they come from diverse cultures and speak many different languages.