Urbi et Orbi: Pope asks world collaboration to “save lives”
On Easter Sunday, the pope celebrated Mass in St. Peter's Basilica.
When the ceremony concluded, he gave the Easter speech next to the Altar of Confession. He forcefully faced the current wounds of humanity.
He remembered the coronavirus patients and their families, praying especially for those not able to be with their relatives in their final moments. He thanked health personnel, and asked governments to put differences aside and act as a team, giving priority to the interest of the sick.
May international sanctions be relaxed, since these make it difficult for countries, on which they have been imposed, to provide adequate support to their citizens. May all nations be put in a position to meet the greatest needs of the moment through the reduction, if not the forgiveness, of the debt burdening the balance sheets of the poorest nations.
The pope is concerned about the situation in Europe, where governments cannot agree on financial aid to rebuild society after the lockdown.
After the Second World War, this beloved continent was able to rise again, thanks to a concrete spirit of solidarity that enabled it to overcome the rivalries of the past. It is more urgent than ever, especially in the present circumstances, that these rivalries do not regain force, but everyone recognizes themselves as part of a single family and supports one another. The European Union is presently facing an epochal challenge, on which will depend not only its future, but that of the whole world.
The pope also called on governments to cut spending on weapons and dedicate those resources to saving lives.
Rather, may this be a time for finally ending the long war that has caused such great bloodshed in Syria, the conflict in Yemen and the hostilities in Iraq and in Lebanon. May this be the time when Israelis and Palestinians resume dialogue, in order to find a stable and lasting solution that will allow both to live in peace. May the sufferings of the people who live in the eastern regions of Ukraine come to an end. May the terrorist attacks carried out against so many innocent people in different African countries come to an end.
Pope Francis also asked the world that the pandemic not lead to forgetting other humanitarian emergencies, such as the situation of the refugees on the border between Greece and Turkey, the crisis in Venezuela, and the guerrillas in northern Mozambique.
The pope's proposal is to look at the world with the eyes of faith: God is stronger than death, so people should not leave room for fear or death in their lives.
Translation: Melissa Butz