Pope Francis’ New Years Message: End Violence and Injustice

In his first New Years Day message since becoming the head of the Catholic Church, Pope Francis challenged Christians and non-Christians alike to work together to end international conflicts. Speaking to those gathered in St. Peter’s Square, he said,

We are all children of one heavenly father. We belong to the same human family and we share a common destiny. This brings a responsibility for each to work so that the world becomes a community of brothers who respect each other, accept each other in one’s diversity, and take care of one another.

For the Catholic Church, New Year’s Day is traditionally dedicated to the promotion of world peace, but Pope Francis’ message echoed recent calls to work together to help those that are displaced by violence and wars. The message followed a massive peace march, in which thousands of people demonstrated the common message of ending global conflicts as they walked together to the Vatican. According to USA Today, several Syrians, who waved the flag of their war-torn country, were among those in the crowd …

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