"These days the international community is following with great concern the plight of Christians in Pakistan, who are often victims of violence or discrimination. Today I express my feelings of spiritual closeness to Ms. Asia Bibi and her family, and I ask that she be released as soon as possible. I also pray for all those who are in similar situations, so that your human dignity and fundamental rights are fully respected.”
The Pope took this opportunity to tie in another heroic female, Saint Juliana of Liege, who was also persecuted.
“She had to suffer the harsh opposition of certain members of the clergy, including the superior upon whom her convent depended. She therefore chose to leave Mont-Cornillon with a number of companions and for ten years, between 1248 and 1258, was accommodated in various houses of
This general audience is the latest in a series of catechesis, which he has dedicated to a female saint.