"If you want to have a rich Church, then the Church ages, it has no life," Francis said.
The Argentine pope, who has focused on the poor since he was selected at a conclave March, said the church should have a heart of poverty, ANSA reported.
"The works of the church must go forward and some are complex, but with a heart of poverty, not a heart of investment or of a businessman," he said.
Pope Francis also noted that Saint Peter did not have a bank account.
"When he had to pay taxes, the Lord sent him to sea to fish a fish with a coin inside in order to pay," he said.