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Pope Francis

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Pope washes the feet of Muslim refugees: We are brothers, we all want to live in peace

2016-03-24

The Pope kneels to wash the feet of a group of refugees. Nobody seems to care about the difference in their religions.  

Among them are Catholics, but also Muslims and a Hindu.

He kneels before her pain and to the mixture of humiliation and fear of being expelled from Europe.

As is the custom on every Holy Thursday, the Pope repeated the symbolic gesture of Jesus to the apostles. He recalled that almost at the same time, Judas was selling Jesus for 30 coins.

POPE FRANCIS
"Also here today are two gestures: Seeing everyone from different cultures and religions gathered together. Muslims, Hindus, Catholics, Copts, Evangelicals ... All brothers. Children of the same God, we want to live in peace, integrated. This is the first gesture.”

Pope Francis specifically compared the acts of the terrorist attacks in Brussels with same as Judas. And he pointed out to the others responsible for the slaughter.

POPE FRANCIS
"Three days ago, an act of war, of destruction in a European city, by people who do not want to live in peace. But behind that gesture, just as behind Judas, there were others. Behind Judas there were those who gave the money so that Jesus would be handed over. Behind "that" gesture, there are manufacturers, arms dealers who want blood, not peace; they want war, not brotherhood.”

The Pope specifically wanted to celebrate the most important Mass of the year in this shelter to asylum-seekers, when Europe is expelling them from the continent.

POPE FRANCIS
"We are different, we are different, we have different cultures and religions, but we are brothers and we want to live in peace. And this is the gesture that I perform with you.”

At the ceremony, there were nearly 900 people, most of them are forced migrants and refugees who have crossed the Mediterranean in small boats seeking a better life.

Most are Muslims, but the Pope has not asked them about their religion. Of course, he did ask them to pray so that this gesture keeps spreading, and so that they can all view each other as brothers.

It was a very symbolic visit full of gestures from Pope Francis.

And when the ceremony ended, he stopped to greet nearly a thousand participants, one-by-one. A gesture that perhaps no one has had with them since they fled their homes.


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