Pope Francis: Social media can threaten 'real-life relationships' and 'imprison people in a virtual reality'

The Pope has warned of the dangers of social media, saying it can end up “imprisoning people in a virtual reality”.

Pope Francis said social media poses a threat to “real life relationships” and while it can help building a network of friendships and solidarity, people should consider cutting down on technology and spending more time with each other.

Speaking to a gathering of more than 80,000 people at Dublin’s Croke Park on Saturday night, the Pope said it was important that social media “never becomes a threat to the real life relationships by imprisoning us in a virtual reality and isolating us from the very real relationships that challenge us to grow”.

Warning – the Pope warned about the dangers of social media during his speech at Dublin’s Croke Park (Picture: AP)

He added: “When you use social media too much you go into a sort of an orbit, when at the dinner table, instead of talking to each other within the family each of you uses his phone to connect with the outside world. Then you go into an orbit.”

The Pope warned that social media can take away “the completeness of the family” and lead individuals “to a fuzzy life without any substance”.

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Pope Francis highlighted the difficulties some families, who have to flee their homes in search of security and peace, have to endure.

“A family’s love and faith can be a source of strength and peace even amid the violence and destruction caused by war and prosecution,” he said.

Sorry – the Pope said the three words every family needs to know are ‘sorry, please and thank you’ (Picture: AP)

The three words every family needs to know, the pontiff said, were “sorry, please and thank you”.

He made the crowd repeat after him “sorry, please and thank you” and advised families not to go to bed angry.

“When you quarrel….say you’re sorry,” he said.

“Before the day is over that’s when you have to make peace, and you know why, do you know why it’s necessary to make peace before day is over? Because if you don’t…it’s very dangerous.”