Alessandra Tarantino/AP
February 20, 2017 10:26 AM

Pope Francis wants young people to keep their cell phones far away from the dinner table.

Addressing a young crowd at a university in Rome on Friday, the 80-year-old pontiff improvised a speech warning against the dangers of dinners without dialogue and calling on young people to participate in family meals — rather than text through them.

“When we’re at the table, when we are speaking to others on our telephones, it’s the start of war because there is no dialogue,” he said.

The pope added that people need to work on being kinder and more polite to each other, especially in today’s society where it seems common for people to “insult” strangers.

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“We need to lower the tone a bit, speak less and listen more,” he said. “Dialogue which brings hearts closer together [is] a medicine against violence.”

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