Giovedì, 18 Ottobre 2018
VATICAN CITY

'No more war,' says Pope Francis on Twitter

English
© ANSA

(By Kate Carlisle)
Vatican City, September 2 - A multi-lingual and
impassioned message against escalating violence in Syria on the
@Pontifex Twitter account by Pope Francis drew broad attention
and support on Monday when the pontiff wrote "War never again!
Never again war!".
During Sunday's Mass in St Peter's Square, the Argentine
pontiff called for a fasting and prayer for peace "in Syria, in
the entire Mideast region, and throughout the whole world" to be
held next Saturday.
"On the 7th of September, here (in St Peter's Square),
from 7 pm until midnight, we will gather together in prayer, in
a spirit of penitence, to ask from God this great gift [of
peace] for the beloved Syrian nation and for all the situations
of conflict and violence in the world", Pope Francis said.
Francis also invited non-Catholic Christians and
non-Christian believers to participate in ways they feel are
appropriate.
"We want a peaceful world...we want to be men and women of
peace," he said.
"The day of prayer announced by the pope is an
extraordinary gesture of peace, which confirms the great love of
Francis for this battered land," Gregory III, Patriarch of the
Church of Antioch, told missionary news agency AsiaNews on
Monday.
"We invite all Catholic, Orthodox, Muslims and
non-believers to pray with us for peace in Syria and the Middle
East," Gregory said.
Italian Foreign Minister Emma Bonino said that it was
"probable" that she too would join in the fast for peace.
Together with her Radical party, the minister said that
she was "evaluating the possibility of fasting for three days -
Friday, Saturday and Sunday" in support of a solution in Syria.
Pope Francis also called on all parties "to seek
negotiations" and urged the international community to take
concrete steps to end conflicts, especially the war in Syria.
"Humanity needs to see gestures of peace and to hear words
of hope," Francis said.
The pontiff also issued a forceful condemnation of the use
of chemical weapons.
"There is the judgment of God, and also the judgment of
history, upon our actions - judgments from which there is no
escaping," he said.
Armed intervention in Syria increases "the risk of
deflagration", and that the violence and conflict "will spread
to other countries," Mons. Mario Toso, secretary of the
Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace said.
"As Pope Francis made understood...the dramatic
developments that lie ahead affect the world as a whole," he
said.
"The conflict in Syria contains all the ingredients to
explode into a war of global dimensions. The alternative can
only be that of rationality with initiatives based on dialogue
and negotiation," Toso said.
Earlier on Monday at a mass held in Rome's Santa Marta
(Saint Martha) residence, Pope Francis spoke out on the evils of
gossip and backbiting, saying that words can kill.
"Those in a community who talk about brothers, members of
the community, they want to kill", he said.
The pontiff said that as with Jesus when he arrived in
Nazareth, relationships that begin with "admiration" can finish
with a crime because of "jealousy and envy".
"This is not (only) something that happened 2,000 years
ago. It happens every day in our hearts...when it is said in a
community 'how great this person is who has come to us'...but
then gossip starts and it ends in skinning the person," Francis
said. "Where there is God, there is no hate, envy or jealousy.
Nor are there those who want to kill with gossip," the pope
said.

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