VATICAN CITY (CNS) – It is “intolerable” that conflict and wars are still raging in Ukraine and other parts of the world, Pope Francis said on World Peace Day.
People throughout the world are crying out, “No to war! No to rearmament! May resources go to development, health, food, education and jobs,” the pope said Jan. 1 after praying the Angelus with some 40,000 visitors in St. Peter’s Square.
St. Paul VI inaugurated the first World Day of Peace in 1968 as a day to be dedicated to prayer and reflection for world peace, he said.
Today, decades later, it is even more strongly apparent how “intolerable the conflict of war, which in Ukraine and other regions sows death and destruction,” is, the pope said.
“However, we do not lose hope because we have faith in God, who in Jesus Christ has opened for us the way of peace,” he said.
“The experience of the pandemic teaches us that no one can save himself alone, but that together we can walk the path of peace and development,” he said.
With the Jan. 1 celebration of the World Day of Peace, he said in his address before reciting the Angelus, “Let us regain awareness of the responsibility that has been entrusted to us to construct the future in the face of the personal and social crises we are living, in the face of the tragedy of the war.”
It can be done, he said, “if we take care of each other and if, all of us together, take care of our common home.”