MESSAGE OF POPE FRANCIS

on Eastern European conflict


“I have great pain in my heart over the worsening situation in Ukraine,” Pope Francis said in the Vatican’s Paul VI Hall.


“Despite the diplomatic efforts over the past few weeks, increasingly alarming scenarios are opening up. Like me, many people throughout the world are feeling anguish and concern. Once again the peace of all is threatened by partisan interests.”


“I would like all those who have the political responsibility to make a serious examination of conscience before God, who is the God of peace and not of war … He wants us to be brothers and not enemies. I pray that all parties involved will refrain from any action that will cause even more suffering for people, destabilizing coexistence among nations and undermining international law.”


“And now, I would like to appeal to everyone, believers and non-believers alike. Jesus taught us that the diabolical evil of violence is answered with the weapons of God, with prayer and fasting,” Pope Francis said.


“I invite everyone to make next March 2, Ash Wednesday, a day of fasting for peace. I encourage believers in a special way to devote themselves intensely to prayer and fasting on that day. May the Queen of Peace preserve the world from the madness of war.”

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