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Rome Reports

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Pope's Angelus: Christians also face discrimination in well-to-do countries

Sunday was a busy day for Pope Francis. Right after presiding over the wedding ceremony of 20 couples in St. Peter's Basilica, he prayed the Angelus before thousands of pilgrims.  Although he didn't specifically mention ISIS, the Pope asked to pray for all persecuted and discriminated Christians in the world. POPE FRANCIS "While we contemplate and celebrate the Holy Cross, we think of so many of our brothers and sisters who are being persecuted and killed because of their faith in Christ. This happens especially there where religious freedom is still not guaranteed or fully realized. It happens, however, even in countries which, in principle, protect freedom and human rights, but where in practice believers, and especially Christians, encounter restrictions and discrimination.â? The Pope also referred to the conflict in the Central African Republic, which started in 2012. The UN recently started a mission in the country to find ways of achieving peace. POPE FRANCIS "While I assure the commitment and prayer of the Catholic Church, I encourage the efforts of the international community, which is coming to the aid of the Central Africans of good will.â? On Sunday, the Church celebrated the feast of the Cross. Pope Francis explained what it truly means to be saved by Christ. POPE FRANCIS "Some non-Christian person might ask: why "exalt" the Cross? We can say that we do not exalt just any cross any or all crosses: we exalt the Cross of Jesus, because Godâ??s love for humanity was revealed most in it.â? Before concluding, the Pope described war as "madness.â? He also reminded Christians that, through the Cross, God defeated all evil. YJA/PM CTV FA -BN Up: PM