Pope Francis says 'very worried' by Mideast violence

16 May, 2018, 15:36 | Author: Wade Massey
  • Pope Francis stars in a scene from the documentary “Pope Francis A Man of His Word.”

"I am very anxious about the escalation of tensions in the Holy Land and the Middle East, and about the spiral of violence which moves us ever further away from the path of peace, dialogue and negotiation", he said during his weekly audience at the Vatican.

Tens of thousands of Palestinians joined Hamas-organized protests on the Gaza Strip's border with Israel, with the Hamas-run Gaza health ministry saying that as of Tuesday, 60 Palestinians were killed in clashes with the IDF, and more than 2,700 injured.

"War calls war, violence calls violence. May God have mercy on us", he said.

Announced late a year ago, this week President Donald Trump officially moved the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, causing protests among the Arab population in both in Israel and Palestine.

Pope Francis Wednesday invited "all the parties involved and the worldwide community to renew their commitment so that dialogue, justice and peace prevail".

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In his catechesis for the weekly audience, Pope Francis concluded his commentary on the sacrament of Baptism with reflections on the symbolism of the white garment and baptismal candle.

During the cathechesis, the pope explained the significance of the white garment worn when receiving the sacrament. "But above all these things, clothe yourselves with charity, which unites them in a ideal way".

Pope Francis finished his catechesis on baptism with an especially energetic audience.

"We are called to receive [the candle's] splendor!" he said. He also explained the meaning of the baptismal candle, lit from the Paschal candle. Christian education is a right for children. He explained that is symbolized the fire of faith passing from the godparents and parents to the child. "Do not be discouraged, because you have the power of the Holy Spirit so that it is possible".

The meeting was prompted by the reception of 2300-page report by two special envoys sent to Rome by Pope Francis earlier this year.

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