Pope Francis has asked for prayers for small farmers in his latest monthly prayer intention video.

In the short clip released for April, the Holy Father calls for a “just compensation” for small farmers’ “invaluable work.” The prayer intention is also aimed at helping people recognize the contribution of farmers to all mankind.

It matches the Pope’s “universal” prayer intention for this month (“That small farmers may receive a just reward for their precious labor”). His “evangelization” prayer intention is that “Christians in Africa may give witness to love and faith in Jesus Christ amid political-religious conflicts.”

Since January of this year, the Pope has broadcast his monthly prayer intentions. The videos are promoted by the Pope’s Worldwide Prayer Network (Apostleship of Prayer).

Jesuit Father Frédéric Fornos, international director of the Pope’s Worldwide Prayer Network, said this fourth prayer-request video of Pope Francis draws attention to the problems that arise “when an economy dismisses or excludes the small farmer.

“While the profits of a few grow exponentially, the small farmer is exploited,” said Father Fornos. “Yet small farmers are essential, so Francis has invited all people of good will to mobilize with prayer and action on behalf of his intention ‘that small farmers may receive fair compensation for their precious work.’”

Agribusiness — agriculture conducted on strictly commercial principles — and industrial monoculture are said to be failing small farm communities, especially in the Pope's native Latin America.

A full list of the Pope's prayer intentions for 2016 can be read here, and for 2017, here