Arms are raised, stretched out towards the sky, holding white cards with the word “peace” written in different languages. A girl, a refugee from Syria, reads the Rome’s “Appeal for peace”: “With firm conviction, we say: no more war! Let’s stop all conflicts […] Let dialogue be resumed to nullify the threat of nuclear weapons.” Pope Francis singed it in front of the people gathered at the Colosseum, holding the word “peace” in their hands, as representatives of the world’s religions did as well. Shortly before, members of those different religions gathered for prayer to invoke peace in their different traditions—a prayer that is “a cry” inside the ancient amphitheater.
“This year our prayer has become a heartfelt plea, because today peace has been gravely violated, assaulted and trampled upon, and this in Europe, on the very continent that in the last century endured the horrors of the two world wars – and we are experiencing a third. Sadly, since then, wars have continued to cause bloodshed and to impoverish the earth. Yet the situation that we are presently experiencing is particularly dramatic…”, the Pontiff warned. “We are not neutral, but allied for peace, and for that reason we invoke the ius pacis as the right of all to settle conflicts without violence,” he added.
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Credits: Elena L. Pasquini