In a gathering at the Hall of Blessings, Pope Francis addressed the members of the Diplomatic Corps accredited to the Holy See, shedding light on the humanitarian crises gripping various sub-Saharan countries in Africa. The Pope’s impassioned call for global attention and concerted efforts aimed at alleviating the suffering of millions marked a key theme of his address.
“Turning our gaze to Africa, we are witnessing the suffering of millions of persons as a result of the numerous humanitarian crises that various sub-Saharan countries experience due to international terrorism, complex social political problems, and the devastating effects caused by climate change,” said Pope Francis.
The Holy Father highlighted the multifaceted challenges, including the impacts of military coups d’état and electoral processes marred by corruption, intimidation, and violence. Urging immediate action, Pope Francis renewed his appeal for serious efforts in implementing the November 2022 Pretoria Agreement, which sought to quell hostilities in Tigray.
“Likewise, [I call] for the pursuit of specific solutions to the tensions and violence that assail Ethiopia, and for dialogue, peace, and stability among the countries of the Horn of Africa,” the Pope emphasized.
Expressing deep concern over the tragic events in Sudan, Pope Francis lamented the lack of a visible resolution after months of civil war. He also drew attention to the plight of refugees in Cameroon, Mozambique, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and South Sudan.
“I had the joy of visiting the latter two countries at the beginning of last year, as a sign of my closeness to their people who are suffering, albeit in different contexts and situations,” Pope Francis stated, expressing gratitude to the authorities for their efforts and hospitality during his visits.
The Pope concluded by recalling his ecumenical journey to South Sudan, where he was joined by the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland. This collaborative effort underscored the shared commitment of ecclesial communities to peace and reconciliation.
Pope Francis’s address resonates as a poignant plea for global solidarity and immediate action in the face of escalating humanitarian crises in Africa. The international community is now called upon to join forces to address these challenges, reflecting the Pope’s unwavering commitment to alleviating the suffering of those affected.
Thus says the Lord GOD: If the wicked man turns away from all the sins he committed, if he keeps all my statutes and does what is right and just, he shall surely live, he shall... not die.
None of the crimes he committed shall be remembered against him; he shall live because of the virtue he has practiced.
Do I indeed derive any pleasure from the death of the wicked? says the Lord GOD. Do I not rather rejoice when he turns from his evil way that he may live?
And if the virtuous man turns from the path of virtue to do evil, the same kind of abominable things that the wicked man does, can he do this and still live? None of his virtuous deeds shall be remembered, because he has broken faith and committed sin; because of this, he shall die.
You say, "The LORD'S way is not fair!" Hear now, house of Israel: Is it my way that is unfair, or rather, are not your ways unfair?
When a virtuous man turns away from virtue to commit iniquity, and dies, it is because of the iniquity he committed that he must die.
But if a wicked man, turning from the wickedness he has committed, does what is right and just, he shall preserve his life;
since he has turned away from all the sins which he committed, he shall surely live, he shall not die.