Pope Francis asked the Church to remember “its role” and that all the faithful feel responsible for peace during a special prayer organized in the Basilica of St. Peter and gathered in the midst of conflicts like Ukraine and Middle East.
“Help us to maintain the unity of the Church and be architects of communion in the world. Remind us of the importance of our role, make us feel responsible for peace, called to prayer and worship, to intercede and make healing for the whole human race,” the pope pleaded in a prayer -prayer addressed to the Virgin Mary. In his prayer, Francis noted that the world is experiencing “an hour of darkness” and spoke of the “wars that are destroying the world.”
“You, dawn of salvation, open the cracks of light in the night of conflicts. You, home of the Holy Spirit, inspire the paths of peace to those responsible for the nations. “You, Woman of all people, reconcile your children, seduced by evil, blinded by power and hatred,” he explained. In the same way, the pope asked the Virgin to “convert those who feed and promote conflicts” and help “the lonely, the elderly, the wounded and the sick.”
He also asked to protect “those who have to leave their homeland and their loved ones.”
Francis called this October 27 as a day of prayer and fasting to invoke God for the gift of peace in the Holy Land – in reference to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict – and in the rest of the world.
In the prayer celebrated by the Holy See at the end of that day, it does not mention specific conflicts but refers to “countries and regions of war.”
During the last general audience held, the pope once again called for the release of Israeli hostages held by the Islamist group Hamas after the October 7 attack.