· At the Angelus on the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul, Pope Francis appeals to end the violence in Iraq ·
Pope Francis' new appeal for the end of violence in Iraq. On Sunday, 29 June, during the Angelus, the Pontiff recalled the distressing news from the country, united with the voices of Iraqi Bishops in calling for the rulers to safeguard, through dialogue, national unity and accord. “I am close to the thousands of families, especially the Christians, who have had to flee their homes and are in grave danger. Violence begets more violence; dialogue is the only way to peace”, the Pope declared.
Shortly before, in the Vatican Basilica, the Bishop of Rome presided the Mass of the solemnity of the patron saints of the Church of Rome, during which he imposed the pallium on 24 metropolitan archbishops. During the homily, pausing on the very testimony of faith offered by the two apostles, he turned his reflection to a theme very dear to him, the strength to resist every form of slavery imposed by those who have power in this world and the strength to escape every worldly temptation. And speaking directly to the archbishops, he asked them to have, or better yet to formulate a response. He posed the question in terms of “fear” and of seeking “pastoral refuge”. He had in fact asked: “We – I wonder – dear brother Bishops, do we have fear? What do we fear? And if we do, what refuge do we seek, in our pastoral life, to be safe? Do we perhaps seek to lean on those who have power in this world? Or do we allow ourselves to be deceived by pride, which seeks gratification and recognition, and in them we seem to be safe? Dear brother Bishops, where do we place our security?”.
He answered, “Our true refuge is faith in God: it removes every fear and renders us free from every form of slavery and from every worldly temptation. Today, the Bishop of Rome and the other Bishops, especially the Metropolitan Archbishops who received the pallium, let us feel called by St Peter's example to confirm our faith in the Lord”.
St. Peter’s Square
April 22, 2019
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