Wednesday, 18 July, 2018

Pope Francis decries 'spiral of violence' in Middle East

Pope Francis speaks during his pastoral visit in Loppiano Pope Francis speaks during his pastoral visit in Loppiano
Kenny Thornton | 16 May, 2018, 22:34

On that day, he said, there will be no more night and we will no longer need our lamps because the light of God will illuminate everything.

Israeli forces killed 60 Palestinians near the Gaza-Israel border on Monday during demonstrations against the opening of the USA embassy in occupied Jerusalem, in the bloodiest day in Gaza in years.

Monday's demonstration had coincided with Israel's 70th anniversary - an event Palestinians refer to as "The Catastrophe" - and the relocation of Washington's Israel embassy to Jerusalem, which also took place Monday.

Francis didn't single out either the Israelis or the Palestinians in his comments, instead urging all sides and the global community to 'renew their commitment so that dialogue, justice and peace prevail'.

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.

Local organization spotlights mental health awareness month
Where you live can have a huge impact on your mental health - everyone needs safe, stable and suitable housing to stay well. Amid this, 68 per cent think employers should do more to improve the understanding of mental health in the workplace .

St. Paul goes on to explain, the pope said, that to "have clothed" one's self with Christ means to live and cultivate virtue. These words, the Pope said, remind us that we are not the light, but rather we are called to receive the light of Christ who has risen from the dead and overcome the shadows of evil. "But above all these things, clothe yourselves with charity, which unites them in a flawless way".

This is our Christian vocation, Pope Francis continued, to walk as sons and daughters of the light, persevering in faith.

Pope Francis had previous defended Barros, saying he had received no evidence of the bishop's guilt, and called accusations against him "calumny" during a trip to Chile in January.

Francis repeated the same invitation he made in his apostolic exhortation, Gaudete et Exsultate ("Rejoice and Be Glad"), asking people to "let the grace of your baptism bear fruit in a path of holiness".

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