Pope warns on a visit to Bahrain that wars have pushed the world into the “abyss”

Pope Francis on Friday appealed to spiritual leaders to assist carry the world again from a “minute brink” and oppose a brand new arms race he mentioned was redesigning Chilly Battle-era spheres of affect.

Francis spoke on his first full day in Bahrain as he completed a discussion board on East-West dialogue promoted by the king of the Gulf state the place, in contrast to Saudi Arabia, Christians are allowed to observe their faith publicly in church buildings.

The go to enhances the Pope’s coverage to enhance relations with the Islamic world after a historic go to to Abu Dhabi in 2019, the primary of its sort for any pope to the Arabian Peninsula. He has visited about 10 Muslim-majority nations since his election in 2013.

Francis, who suffers from a knee illness that forces him to make use of a wheelchair and a cane, spun his discuss concerning the function of religions in selling peace, disarmament and social justice.

“After two horrible world wars, a Chilly Battle that has saved the world for many years in suspense, and catastrophic conflicts have occurred in each a part of the world, and within the midst of accusations, threats and condemnations, we nonetheless discover ourselves getting ready to a fragile slope and no We need to fall.”

In an obvious reference to Ukraine, Francis condemned the state of affairs through which “just a few rulers are in a resolute battle for partisan pursuits, reviving outdated rhetoric, and redesigning spheres of affect and opposing blocs”.

Francis, who helps a complete ban on nuclear weapons and sometimes condemns the worldwide arms commerce, mentioned spiritual leaders can’t assist wars — an obvious reference to the Russian Orthodox Church Patriarch Kirill, who gave enthusiastic assist for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and Ukraine. which the Pope implicitly criticized earlier than.

In his speech earlier than the Pope, King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa referred to as for a consensus to cease the warfare between Russia and Ukraine and a “critical dialogue for the great of all mankind.”

The Pope repeated the decision, as did the third speaker, Sheikh Ahmed Al-Tayeb, the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar Mosque and College in Egypt, who signed the 2019 Human Fraternity Doc, a historic assertion on the function of religions within the pursuit of peace. .

Francis, with out naming any nation, additionally denounced the financing of terrorism.

On Friday afternoon, Francis addressed Bahrain’s Muslim Council of Elders within the courtyard of the Royal Mosque, praising Muslim leaders who “see extremism as a risk to the true faith,” and referred to as for extra dialogue between Islam and different religions.

“We should place the way forward for brotherhood on the previous of hostility and overcome historic prejudices and misunderstandings within the identify of who’s the supply of peace,” he mentioned.

A younger boy recited a verse from the Qur’an and a lady learn a passage from the Previous Testomony.

Later, Francis would lead prayers on the Cathedral of Our Girl of Arabia, the biggest church within the Arabian Peninsula and one in every of two church buildings serving the small Bahraini Catholic group of about 160,000.


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