Pope Francis condemned the drug trade's "dealers of death" and urged Mexicans to shun the devil's lust for money as he led a huge open-air Mass for more than 300,000 people Sunday in the violence-riddled Mexico City suburb of Ecatepec. In a clear reference to the drug lords who hold sway in the city's sprawling expanses of cinderblock slums, Francis focused his homily on the danger posed by the devil, the AP reports. "Let us get it into our heads: With the devil, there is no dialogue," the pope said at the biggest scheduled event of his five-day visit to Mexico. "Only the power of the word of God can defeat him."
In a final prayer, he urged Mexicans to make their country into a land of opportunity "where there will be no need to emigrate in order to dream, no need to be exploited in order to work, no need to make the despair and poverty of many the opportunism of a few, a land that will not have to mourn men and women, young people and children who are destroyed at the hands of the dealers of death." On his way to Mexico on Friday, Francis held a historic meeting in Havana with the head of the Russian Orthodox Church. "We are not competitors, but brothers," Francis and Patriarch Kirill declared in a joint statement after the first meeting of its kind since the Great Schism of 1054, calling for action on such issues as the persecution of Christians in Iraq and Syria.