Vatican City, Feb 10, 2017 / 03:17 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- A woman’s value is not based on her material accomplishments, but simply in the beauty and harmony she brings to the world, just by her very being, Pope Francis said. While neither man nor woman is superior to the other, they play different roles, the Pope said.

“Man does not bring harmony…It is she who brings that harmony that teaches us to caress, to love with tenderness; and who makes the world a beautiful place.” Often we hear people say, the Pope said Feb. 9, that “it is necessary in this society, in this institution, that here there should be a woman because she does this, she does these things.” “No, no, no, no!” he said. “Functionality is not the purpose of women. It is true that women should do things, to do things as we all do. The purpose of women is to make harmony, and without women there is no harmony in the world.”

In his homily at Casa Santa Marta, the Pope reflected on the Book of Genesis, in particular, the creation of Eve from Adam’s rib, saying that just like Adam felt that something was missing in the Garden without Eve, without women, something would be missing from the world. “When women are not there, harmony is missing. We might say: But this is a society with a strong masculine attitude, and this is the case, no? The woman is missing.”

People might think: “yes, yes: the woman is there to wash the dishes, to do things…” Francis said, but this is wrong, he emphasized. “The woman is there to bring harmony. Without the woman there is no harmony.” Pope Francis referenced the day’s Gospel, which tells the story of a woman whose daughter is possessed by a demon. Even though she is at first rebuked by Jesus when she asks him to heal her daughter, she does not give up, saying “Lord, even the dogs under the table eat the children’s scraps.”

“This is the great gift of God: He has given us woman,” the Pope said. “And in the Gospel, we have heard what a woman is capable of, eh? She is courageous, that one, eh? She went forward with courage.” “But there is more, so much more. A woman is harmony, is poetry, is beauty. Without her the world would not be so beautiful, it would not be harmonious. And I like to think — but this is a personal thing — that God created women so that we would all have a mother,” he said.

Pope Francis also said that while all exploitation of people is a “crime of ‘lèse-humanité,’” or a crime against humanity, “exploiting a woman is even more serious,” he said, because “it is destroying the harmony that God has chosen to give to the world. It is to destroy.”