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Pope Francis Addresses World Meeting of Families Festival

Alex Wong/Getty Images(PHILADELPHIA) — Pope Francis spoke about the importance of family before an enormous crowd Saturday evening at the World Meeting of Families Festival to cap off an extraordinary day in Philadelphia.

The pope was welcomed by actor Mark Wahlberg, who hosted the evening’s performances. Musicians kicked off the festival, singing and dancing for the pope.

Six families from various continents were among the speakers. They shared their hopes, dreams and fears on stage as the pontiff listened attentively. The families were from Australia, Ukraine, Jordan, Nigeria, the United States and Argentina.

At the end of the festival, the pontiff highlighted the importance of families.

“All the love and beauty God has in himself, he gives it to the family,” the pope said.

Pope Francis added, “God sent Him [Jesus] amid a family. He could do this because it was a family with a truly open heart.”

He joked that family life is not easy and that he knows about the problems they face despite being single.

“Families have the difficulties, families fight, sometimes plates can fly. Children bring headaches. I won’t speak about mother-in-laws,” he said. “With families, there is always light. … The family is like a factory of hope, a factory of Resurrection.”

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