As the conflict continues in Iraq, Ukraine and the Gaza strip, the Pope made an urgent appeal for peace during the Sunday Angelus, calling for leaders to stop the violence and work towards peace.
"Today, my thoughts turn to three areas in crisis: the Middle East, Iraq and Ukraine. I ask you to join me in prayer, so that the Lord may grant these populations and their leaders, the wisdom and strength to move forward, with determination, towards a path of peace.”
With thousands of people out in the Square, the Pope also addressed the suffering children face in these bloody conflicts.
"Dear Brothers and Sisters, Never resort to war! Never war! Above all, I think of all the children who are robbed of their hope for a better life and a decent future. Killed children, wounded children, mutilated children, orphans, children who play with remnants of war, instead of toys. Children who don't know how to smile. Please stop! I ask you with all my heart. It's time to stop. Stop it please!”
Since July 28th marks 100 years since the start of World War I, the Pope asked that people look back at history, so they don't repeat the same mistakes.
"As we remember this tragic chapter, let's not make the same mistakes, but rather, may we learn from history. May the lessons of peace and of patient and courageous dialogue always prevail.”
Precisely to mark 100 years since World War I, Pope Francis also talked about Benedict XV, who at the time, was Pontiff. He wrote his first encyclical on peace, promoting the need for dialogue and cease fire among the countries in conflict.