Pope Francis: ‘Prayer is the strength of peace’

The Pope’s words after the Angelus

Vatican Media - archive photo

After the Angelus prayer, the Holy Father invited people to pray for peace in Ukraine and Ethiopia and for the countries of Africa affected by the floods. He recalled today’s celebration of World Mission Day, whose motto is “You will be my witnesses”.

Below are the Pope’s words after the Angelus, provided by the Holy See Press Office:

After the Angelus, the Holy Father continued:

Dear brothers and sisters,

Today is World Missionary Day, on the theme: “You shall be my witnesses”. It is an important opportunity to reawaken in all baptized persons the desire to participate in the universal mission of the Church, through witness and the proclamation of the Gospel. I encourage everyone to support missionaries with prayer and concrete solidarity, so that they may continue their work of evangelization and human promotion throughout the world.

Today registration opens for World Youth Day, which will take place in Lisbon in August 2023. I have invited two Portuguese youngsters to be here with me while I register too, as a pilgrim. I will do it now [clicks on tablet]. There, I have registered. You, have you registered? Do it… And you, have you registered? Do it… There, stay here. Dear young people, I invite you to register for this meeting in which, after a long period of staying at a distance, we will rediscover the joy of the fraternal embrace between peoples and between generations, which we need so much!

Yesterday, Vicente Nicasio Renuncio Toribio and eleven companions of the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer, killed in hatred of the faith in Spain in 1936, were beatified in Madrid. The example of these witnesses of Christ, who even shed their bled, spur us to be consistent and courageous; may their intercession sustain those who strive today to sow the Gospel in the world. Let us applaud the new Blesseds!

I follow the persistent situation of conflict in Ethiopia with trepidation. Once again, I repeat with heartfelt concern that violence does not resolve discord, but only increases the tragic consequences. I appeal to those who hold political responsibility to put an end to the suffering of the defenceless population and to find equitable solutions for lasting peace throughout the country. May the efforts of the parties for dialogue and the search for the common good lead to a genuine path of reconciliation. May our prayers, our solidarity and the necessary humanitarian aid not fail our Ethiopian brothers and sisters, who are so sorely tried.

I am saddened by the floods that are affecting various countries in Africa and which have caused death and destruction. I pray for the victims, and am close to the millions of displaced persons, and I hope for a greater concerted effort to prevent these calamities.

I greet you all, Romans and pilgrims from various countries. In particular, I greet the Indonesian clerics and religious resident in Rome; the Peruvian community which is celebrating the feast of the Señor de los Milagros, the Fundación Roman Academic Centre and the group from the Polish diocese of Tarnow. I greet the faithful from San Donà di Piave, Padua, Pontedera and Molfetta, candidates for Confirmation from Piacenza, the “TIberiade” group from Carrobbio degli Angeli and the Nonviolent Movement from Verona. And today, at the start of a new government, let us pray for unity and peace in Italy.

The day after tomorrow, Tuesday 25 October, I will go to the Colosseum to pray for peace in Ukraine and in the world, together with representatives of the Christian Churches and Communities and world religions, gathered in Rome for the “Cry of Peace” meeting. I invite you to join spiritually in this great invocation to God: prayer is the strength of peace. Let us pray, let us continue to pray for martyred Ukraine.

I wish you all a blessed Sunday. Please, do not forget to pray for me. Enjoy your lunch, and arrivederci!