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Pope: No-work Sundays good, not just for faithful

Faithful cheer as Pope Francis arrives to give a Mass in Campobasso, Italy, Saturday, July 5, 2014. Pope Francis is on a one day trip to the southern Italian region of Molise. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino) -
Faithful cheer as Pope Francis arrives to give a Mass in Campobasso, Italy, Saturday, July 5, 2014. Pope Francis is on a one day trip to the southern Italian region of Molise. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)
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By The Associated Press

CAMPOBASSO, Italy - Pope Francis says abandoning the traditionally Christian practice of not working on Sundays isn't such a good change.

Francis on Saturday travelled to Molise, an agricultural region in the heart of southern Italy where unemployment is chronically high. While he said poor people need employment to have dignity, he disagreed with opening stores and other businesses on Sundays as a way to create jobs.

Francis said the priority should be "not economic but human," adding "maybe it's time to ask ourselves if working on Sundays is true freedom."

He also said that spending Sundays with family and friends is an "ethical choice" for faithful and non-faithful alike.

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