Francis told faithful in St Peter's Square that 'the two choices go together'. He said those at the Paris climate conference this week need to make every effort to lessen the impact of climate change while also fighting poverty and making human dignity flourish.

He is asking for prayers so that those making decisions on climate measures receive "the courage to always use as their criterion of choice the greater good of the human family.

Quoting from his environment encyclical, Francis asked: What kind of world do we want to leave those who come after us and to children who are growing up? Pope's comments came a day before ministers begin a frenetic week of negotiations to seal a historic agreement in Paris.

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