Will world leaders heed the Pope’s reiterated appeal for global ceasefire?

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Will world leaders heed the Pope’s reiterated appeal for global ceasefire?

By Munir Bayouk/ en.abouna.org

On Sunday, July 19, His Holiness Pope Francis reiterated his appeal for a global ceasefire to allow conflict-torn populations to receive humanitarian aid and to combat the coronavirus pandemic that continues to claim lives and wreak havoc on the economies of the world.

He said “In this time in which the pandemic continues, I want to assure all those suffering from the illness of my thoughts and prayers.”

Referring to the populations that find themselves in situations of conflict, he added, that “following the recent United Nations resolution I renew my appeal for a global and immediate ceasefire so the necessary humanitarian assistance can be received.

Since the start of Pope Francis’ pontificate, the Pope has been visiting one country after the other calling for the attainment of fraternal relations among peoples, by combating poverty, as well as by restoring peace among the various components of societies.

Reacting to a July 1 United Nations Security Council motion which unanimously adopted a resolution demanding “a general and immediate cessation of hostilities in all situations , the pope said, “The call for a global and immediate ceasefire, which would allow the peace and security essential for providing the humanitarian assistance so urgently needed, is commendable.” He also hoped that “this decision will be implemented effectively and promptly for the sake of the many people who are suffering” throughout the world.

POPE DECLARES A YEAR OF MERCY
On his second anniversary of his pontificate, the Pope announced an extraordinary jubilee, a Holy Year of Mercy, to highlight the Catholic Church's "mission to be a witness of mercy."

"No one can be excluded from God's mercy. I frequently have thought about how the church can make more evident its mission to be a witness of mercy. The Biblical theme of that year was, "Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.

HIGHLIGHTS OF POPE’S ENDEAVORS TO RESTORE WORLD PEACE
He visited the two Japanese cities razed by atomic bombs during World War II, namely Nagasaki and Hiroshima. In these two cities he called for a “world without nuclear weapons.” He said, “We will be judged on this.”

In Hiroshima, the Pope met with bomb survivors and spoke vividly of the “black hole of death and destruction” that atomic weapons could cause. After laying a wreath to the Nagasaki bombing’s victims, the pope said, “In a world where millions of children and families live in inhumane conditions, the money that is squandered and the fortunes made through the manufacture, upgrading, maintenance and sale of evermore destructive weapons are an affront crying out to heaven.”

Another highlight of Pope’s endeavor to restore world peace is the historic document signed by the Pope and Grand Imam of Al-Azhar Ahmad Tayeb in Abu Dhabi titled, the “Document on Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together”

This document, according to Andrea Tornielli, “is not only a milestone in relations between Christianity and Islam but also represents a message with a strong impact on the international scene.”

In the document, the two religious leaders ask all people of religion and culture, as well as the media, to rediscover and spread “the values of peace, justice, goodness, beauty, human fraternity and coexistence”. They also “resolutely declare that religions must never incite war, hateful attitudes, hostility and extremism, nor must they incite violence or the shedding of blood. These tragic realities are the consequence of a deviation from religious teachings. They result from a political manipulation of religions and from interpretations made by religious groups”. For this reason, “We thus call upon all concerned to stop using religions to incite hatred, violence, extremism and blind fanaticism and to refrain from using the name of God to justify acts of murder, exile, terrorism and oppression”. The Pope and the Grand Imam recall that “God, the Almighty, has no need to be defended by anyone and does not want His name to be used to terrorize people.”

WHAT IS NEXT?
The Pope’s appeal for global ceasefire is exigently needed at this time, as world leaders suffer from Coronavirus pandemic, wars, violence, poverty and a state of hopelessness prevailing in the offing. It is time to resort to peace which ultimately gives hope to people in a bright future and improves the livelihood of peoples.

We need peace, Lord Jesus Christ said, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

May the Prince of Peace inspire world leaders to restore peace worldwide.

Tue, 07/21/2020 - 10:49
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