Pope hears testimonies from a Palestinian and an Israeli

‘Our pain has united us’

 ‘Our pain has united us’  ING-021
24 May 2024

In the morning, Pope Francis had chaired the “Arena of Peace” meeting, where he signed an appeal for peace from mothers from Israel and Palestine. “Weavers of dialogue in the Holy Land, ask world leaders to listen to your voices, to include you in negotiation processes”, said the Pope in the arena in front of around 12,500 people. Agreements arise from reality, not from ideologies, said the Pope. “Peace is made with the feet, hands and eyes of the peoples engaged”.

The mothers’ appeal for peace was signed by the Israeli Maoz Icon and the Palestinian Aziz Sarah, both of whom lost family members to the violence of war. The entrepreneurs had previously given an impressive account of the friendship that had developed as a result. “Our pain has united us”, they said arm in arm on the stage of the Verona Arena. The Pope then stood up and spontaneously embraced the two, calling them “brothers”, and the embrace “a project for the future”. “In the face of the suffering of these two peoples, words fail us”, said Pope Francis and put aside his prepared speech and initiated a minute of silence in which those present were asked to pray for peace.