Pope urges Congo, South Sudan to work for peace, prosperity

ROME: Pope Francis calling on the people and leaders of Congo and South Sudan on Saturday to “turn the page” and forge new paths of reconciliation, peace and development.
Pope Francis released a video message on the day he was due to begin a week-long pilgrimage to two African countries. He canceled his scheduled trip last month because of knee pain that made walking and standing very difficult.
In the message, Francis said he was “very disappointed” by the turn of events and promised to visit “as soon as possible.”
He appealed to the people of both countries not to let themselves be robbed of hope despite the violence, political instability, exploitation and poverty that he said have long afflicted them.
“You all have a great mission, starting with your political leaders: It is to turn the page to discover new paths, new paths of reconciliation and forgiveness, peaceful coexistence. peace and development,” Francis said.
He said political leaders have pursued such goals for young people who have dreams of peace “and deserve to see those dreams come true”.
“For their sake, above all, it is necessary to lay down arms, overcome all resentments, and write new pages of brotherhood,” the pope said.
While Francis is unable to travel, he will celebrate a special Mass in St. Peter’s on Sunday for RomanCongolese community. He sent his number 2, Cardinal Pietro Parolinvisited the Congo and South Sudan on the days that Pope Francis should have been there.

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