Urbi et Orbi Blessing: Francis Condemns Wars, Fratricidal Hatred

On the occasion of the traditional Urbi et Orbi blessing, Pope Francis addressed the faithful gathered in St. Peter’s Square and recalled the difficult days being experienced by Ukraine and other regions of the world

Newsroom (18/04/2022 12:00 PM, Gaudium Press) After the Holy Mass of Easter, the Pontiff addressed the Vatican balcony to give the traditional Urbi et Orbi blessing.

“Our eyes are incredulous, on this Easter of war,” Francis said referring to the war going on in Ukraine.

“With all the blood and violence we have seen, we find it hard to believe that Jesus has truly risen.” Francis then asks if Easter was an illusion: “No, it is not an illusion… Christ has truly risen!”

Spirit of Cain

The Pope then spoke about how the world, instead of joining forces to recover from the deep scars that the pandemic has left, shows that it still has the spirit of Cain “who looks at Abel not as a brother but as a rival and thinks of a way to eliminate him.”

Francis concluded this thought by saying that today, more than ever, we need the Risen Jesus to tell us, “Peace be with you.”

Francis continued his reflection by stating that the wounds of Jesus are doubly ours: first because they were inflicted “because of our sins, hardness of heart and fratricidal hatred.” Secondly, they are ours because He wanted to keep them in his glorious body for us.

Wars and conflicts around the world

Next, the Pope evoked the wars that devastate the world today. And he began by recalling the sufferings in Ukraine: “May there be peace for war-torn Ukraine, so sorely tried by the violence and destruction of the cruel and senseless war into which it was dragged. In this terrible night of suffering and death, may a new dawn of hope soon appear!”

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Francis recalled the violence that has occurred in Jerusalem in recent days, as well as the sufferings of Christian communities in the Middle East, especially in Lebanon and Yemen, which suffer from a conflict “forgotten by all.”

The Pontiff also recalled the wars taking place in Myanmar and Afghanistan, and asked that peace be established on the African continent “so that the exploitation it suffers and the hemorrhaging caused by terrorist attacks – particularly in the Sahel region – may cease.” The Pope did not forget to mention Latin America and its difficult reality of violence and poverty. (FM)

Compiled by Gustavo Kralj

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