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Apostolic Exhortation on the Church of the Middle-East - الإرشاد الرسولي

CedarLb

Legendary Member
Plenty of politicians from various affiliations praised the apostolic exhortation, a.k.a "الإرشاد الرسولي". Some have asked to adopt it as a road-map.

However, most probably the crushing majority of the Lebanese did not have a look at its content. Hence, this thread contains excerpts related to the socio/political aspects of the current situation in the Middle-East.

I have omitted many parts that sounded too religious or Christian. The whole article can be accessed on this link.

It's a very interesting read, although a long one. I encourage you to read it all.

It addresses many aspects, such as the relations between Christians, Muslims and Jews, secularization VS religious fundamentalism (favoring a healthy secularity), and Christians immigration.

[FIELDSET="POST-SYNODAL APOSTOLIC EXHORTATION, ECCLESIA IN MEDIO ORIENTE"]
INTRODUCTION​

1. The Church in the Middle East, which from the dawn of Christian faith has made her pilgrim way in those holy lands, today courageously continues her witness, the fruit of a life of communion with God and neighbour.
...
PART ONE​

“We give thanks to God always for you all,
constantly mentioning you in our prayers” (1 Th 1:2)

7. With these words of thanksgiving from Saint Paul, I greet the Christians living in the Middle East and assure them of my fervent and continued prayers. The Catholic Church, and with her the entire Christian community, keeps them in mind and acknowledges with gratitude their noble and ancient contribution to the building up of the Body of Christ. She thanks them for their fidelity and assures them of her affection.

The context


8. It is moving for me to recall my journeys to the Middle East. As a land especially chosen by God, it was the home of Patriarchs and Prophets. It was the glorious setting for the Incarnation of the Messiah; it saw the raising of the Saviour’s cross and witnessed the resurrection of the Redeemer and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Traversed by the Apostles, saints and a number of the Fathers of the Church, it was the crucible of the earliest dogmatic formulations. Yet this blessed land and its peoples have tragically experienced human upheavals. How many deaths have there been, how many lives ravaged by human blindness, how many occasions of fear and humiliation! It would seem that there is no end to the crime of Cain (cf. Gen 4:6-10 and 1 Jn 3:8-15) among the sons of Adam and Eve created in God’s image (cf. Gen 1:27). Adam’s transgression, reinforced by the sin of Cain, continues to produce thorns and thistles (cf. Gen 3:18) even today. How sad it is to see this blessed land suffer in its children who relentlessly tear one another to pieces and die! Christians know that only Jesus, who passed through sufferings and death in order to rise again, is capable of bringing salvation and peace to all who dwell in your part of the world (cf. Acts 2:23-24, 32-33). Him alone, Christ, the Son of God, do we proclaim! Let us repent, then, and be converted, “that sins may be blotted out, that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord” (Acts 3:19-20a).

9. For the sacred Scriptures, peace is not simply a pact or a treaty which ensures a tranquil life, nor can its definition be reduced to the mere absence of war. According to its Hebrew etymology, peace means being complete and intact, restored to wholeness. It is the state of those who live in harmony with God and with themselves, with others and with nature. Before appearing outwardly, peace is interior. It is blessing. It is the yearning for a reality. Peace is something so desirable that it has become a greeting in the Middle East (cf. Jn 20:19; 1 Pet 5:14). Peace is justice (cf. Is 32:17); Saint James in his Letter adds that “the harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace” (3:18). The struggle of the Prophets and the reflections of the Wisdom authors were inspired by the hope of eschatological peace. It is towards this authentic peace in God that Christ leads us. He alone is its gate (Jn 10:9). This is the sole gate that Christians wish to enter.

10. Only by beginning with conversion to God, and by showing forgiveness to those close at hand and in the wider community, will the just respond to Christ’s invitation to become “children of God” (cf. Mt 5:9). Only the meek will delight in boundless peace (cf. Ps 37:11). In offering us a life of communion with God, Jesus creates true fraternity, not the fraternity marred by sin.[4] “For he is our peace, who has made us both one, and has broken down the dividing wall of hostility”
(Eph 2:14). Christians know that the earthly politics of peace will only be effective if justice in God and justice among men and women are its authentic basis, and if this same justice battles against the sin which is at the origin of division. For this reason, the Church wishes to overcome every difference of race, sex and social condition (cf. Gal 3:28 and Col 3:11) in the knowledge that all are one in Christ, who is all in all. This too is why the Church supports and encourages every peace initiative throughout the world and particularly in the Middle East. She works unstintingly and in a variety of ways to help people to live in peace, while also supporting the international juridical framework which consolidates peace.The Holy See’s positions on the different conflicts which tragically afflict the region and on the status of Jerusalem and the holy places are well known. [5] Yet the Church does not lose sight of the fact that, before all else, peace remains a fruit of the Spirit (cf. Gal 5:22), one which must constantly be implored from God (cf. Mt 7:7-8).

...

13. I encourage the efforts of theologians who work tirelessly for unity, and I express my appreciation for the activities of local ecumenical commissions at different levels and of the various communities which pray and work for the goal of unity by promoting friendship and fraternity. In fidelity to the Church’s origins and her living traditions, it is also important that all speak with one voice in addressing the great moral questions dealing with the truth about man, the family, sexuality, bioethics, freedom, justice and peace.

Interreligious dialogue

...

19. The Church’s universal nature and vocation require that she engage in dialogue with the members of other religions. In the Middle East this dialogue is based on the spiritual and historical bonds uniting Christians to Jews and Muslims. It is a dialogue which is not primarily dictated by pragmatic political or social considerations, but by underlying theological concerns which have to do with faith. They are grounded in the sacred Scriptures and are clearly defined in the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church Lumen Gentium and in the Declaration on the Church’s Relation to Non-Christian Religions Nostra Aetate.[17] Jews, Christians and Muslims alike believe in one God, the Creator of all men and women. May Jews, Christians and Muslims rediscover one of God’s desires, that of the unity and harmony of the human family. May Jews, Christians and Muslims find in other believers brothers and sisters to be respected and loved, and in this way, beginning in their own lands, give the beautiful witness of serenity and concord between the children of Abraham. Rather than being exploited in endless conflicts which are unjustifiable for authentic believers, the acknowledgment of one God – if lived with a pure heart – can make a powerful contribution to peace in the region and to respectful coexistence on the part of its peoples.

20. The bonds uniting Christians and Jews are many and they run deep. They are anchored in a precious common spiritual heritage. There is of course our faith in one God, the Creator, who reveals himself, offers his unending friendship to mankind and out of love desires to redeem us. There is also the Bible, much of which is common to both Jews and Christians. For both, it is the word of God. Our common recourse to sacred Scripture draws us closer to one another. Moreover, Jesus, a son of the Chosen People, was born, lived and died a Jew (cf. Rom 9:4-5). Mary, his Mother, likewise invites us to rediscover the Jewish roots of Christianity. These close bonds are a unique treasure of which Christians are proud and for which they are indebted to the Chosen People. The Jewishness of the Nazarene allows Christians to taste joyfully the world of the Promise and resolutely introduces them into the faith of the Chosen People, making them a part of that People. Yet the person and the deepest identity of Jesus also divide them, for in him Christians recognize the Messiah, the Son of God.

...

22. Relationships between the two communities of believers bear the marks of history and human passion. Misunderstandings and reciprocal distrust have abounded. Past persecutions, whether surreptitious or violent, are inexcusable and greatly to be deplored. And yet, despite these tragic situations, the interplay between both communities over the centuries proved so fruitful that it contributed to the birth and expansion of the civilization and culture commonly known as Judeo-Christian. It is as if these two worlds, claiming to be different or opposed for various reasons, had decided to unite in offering humanity a noble alloy. This relationship, which both unites and separates Jews and Christians, ought to open both groups to a new sense of responsibility for and with one another.[18] For both peoples have received the same blessing and the eternal promises which enable them to advance trustingly towards fraternity.

23. The Catholic Church, in fidelity to the teachings of the Second Vatican Council, looks with esteem to Muslims, who worship God above all by prayer, almsgiving and fasting, revere Jesus as a prophet while not acknowledging his divinity, and honour Mary, his Virgin Mother. We know that the encounter of Islam and Christianity has often taken the form of doctrinal controversy. Sadly, both sides have used doctrinal differences as a pretext for justifying, in the name of religion, acts of intolerance, discrimination, marginalization and even of persecution.[19]

24. Despite this fact, Christians live daily alongside Muslims in the Middle East, where their presence is neither recent nor accidental, but has a long history. As an integral part of the Middle East, Christians have developed over the centuries a type of relationship with their surroundings which can prove instructive. They have let themselves be challenged by Muslim devotion and piety, and have continued, in accordance with their means and to the extent possible, to live by and to promote the values of the Gospel in the surrounding culture. The result has been a particular form of symbiosis. It is proper, then, to acknowledge the contribution made by Jews, Christians and Muslims in the formation of a rich culture proper to the Middle East.[20]

25. The Catholics of the Middle East, the majority of whom are native citizens of their countries, have the duty and right to participate fully in national life, working to build up their country. They should enjoy full citizenship and not be treated as second-class citizens or believers. As in the past when, as pioneers of the Arab Renaissance, they took full part in the cultural, economic and scientific life of the different cultures of the region, so too in our own day they wish to share with Muslims their experiences and to make their specific contribution. It is because of Jesus that Christians are sensitive to the dignity of the human person and to freedom of religion which is its corollary. For love of God and humanity, thus honouring Christ’s two natures, and with eternal life in view, Christians have built schools, hospitals and institutions of every kind where all people are welcomed without discrimination (cf. Mt 25:31ff.). For these reasons, Christians are particularly concerned for the fundamental rights of the human person. It is wrong to claim that these rights are only “Christian” human rights. They are nothing less than the rights demanded by the dignity of each human person and each citizen, whatever his or her origins, religious convictions and political preferences.

26. Religious freedom is the pinnacle of all other freedoms. It is a sacred and inalienable right. It includes on the individual and collective levels the freedom to follow one’s conscience in religious matters and, at the same time, freedom of worship. It includes the freedom to choose the religion which one judges to be true and to manifest one’s beliefs in public.[21] It must be possible to profess and freely manifest one’s religion and its symbols without endangering one’s life and personal freedom. Religious freedom is rooted in the dignity of the person; it safeguards moral freedom and fosters mutual respect. Jews, with their long experience of often deadly assaults, know full well the benefits of religious freedom. For their part, Muslims share with Christians the conviction that no constraint in religious matters, much less the use of force, is permitted. Such constraint, which can take multiple and insidious forms on the personal and social, cultural, administrative and political levels, is contrary to God’s will. It gives rise to political and religious exploitation, discrimination and violence leading to death. God wants life, not death. He forbids all killing, even of those who kill (cf. Gen 4:15-16; 9:5-6; Ex 20:13).

27. Religious tolerance exists in a number of countries, but it does not have much effect since it remains limited in its field of action. There is a need to move beyond tolerance to religious freedom. Taking this step does not open the door to relativism, as some would maintain. It does not compromise belief, but rather calls for a reconsideration of the relationship between man, religion and God. It is not an attack on the “foundational truths” of belief, since, despite human and religious divergences, a ray of truth shines on all men and women.[22] We know very well that truth, apart from God, does not exist as an autonomous reality. If it did, it would be an idol. The truth cannot unfold except in an otherness open to God, who wishes to reveal his own otherness in and through my human brothers and sisters. Hence it is not fitting to state in an exclusive way: “I possess the truth”. The truth is not possessed by anyone; it is always a gift which calls us to undertake a journey of ever closer assimilation to truth. Truth can only be known and experienced in freedom; for this reason we cannot impose truth on others; truth is disclosed only in an encounter of love.

28. The attention of the whole world is fixed on the Middle East as it seeks its path. May this region demonstrate that coexistence is not a utopia, and that distrust and prejudice are not a foregone conclusion. Religions can join one another in service to the common good and contribute to the development of each person and the building of society. The Christians of the Middle East have experienced for centuries the dialogue between Islam and Christianity. For them it means the dialogue of and in daily life. They know its rich possibilities and its limitations. They have also experienced the more recent dialogue between Judaism and Christianity. For some time now, bilateral and trilateral dialogues have taken place between Jewish, Muslim and Christian intellectuals or theologians. These offer fruitful opportunities for encounter and the study of various issues, and they ought to be supported. An effective contribution in this regard is made by all those Catholic institutions or centres for the study of philosophy, theology and other disciplines which have long been present in the Middle East, and carry on their activity there in sometimes difficult conditions. I express my appreciation to them and I encourage them to continue their work as peacemakers, in the knowledge that every effort made to overcome ignorance and to promote knowledge deserves to be supported. God willing, the happy union of the dialogue of everyday life and the dialogue of intellectuals or theologians will slowly but surely contribute to improving relations between Jews and Christians, Jews and Muslims and Muslims and Christians. This is my hope and the intention for which I pray.

Two new realities

29. Like the rest of the world, the Middle East is experiencing two opposing trends: secularization, with its occasionally extreme consequences, and a violent fundamentalism claiming to be based on religion. Some Middle Eastern political and religious leaders, whatever their community, tend to look with suspicion upon secularity (laïcité) as something intrinsically atheistic or immoral. It is true that secularity sometimes reduces religion to a purely private concern, seeing personal or family worship as unrelated to daily life, ethics or one’s relationships with others. In its extreme and ideological form, secularity becomes a secularism which denies citizens the right openly to express their religion and claims that only the State can legislate on the public form which religion may take. These theories are not new. Nor are they confined to the West or to be confused with Christianity.

A healthy secularity, on the other hand, frees religion from the encumbrance of politics, and allows politics to be enriched by the contribution of religion, while maintaining the necessary distance, clear distinction and indispensable collaboration between the two spheres. No society can develop in a healthy way without embodying a spirit of mutual respect between politics and religion, avoiding the constant temptation either to merge the two or to set them at odds. The basis of a constructive relationship between politics and religion is, first and foremost, human nature – a sound understanding of man – and full respect for inalienable human rights. A sense of this correct relationship should lead to the realization that relations between the spiritual (religious) and the temporal (political) spheres should be marked by a kind of unity in distinction, inasmuch as both are called, while remaining distinct, to cooperate harmoniously in the service of the common good. This kind of healthy secularity ensures that political activity does not manipulate religion, while the practice of religion remains free from a politics of self-interest which at times is barely compatible with, if not downright contrary to, religious belief. For this reason, a healthy secularity, embodying unity in distinction, is necessary and even vital for both spheres. The challenges raised by the relationship of politics and religion can be met patiently and courageously through a sound human and religious formation. Constant emphasis needs to be put on the place of God in personal, family and civic life, and on the proper place of men and women in God’s plan. Above all, greater prayer is required for this intention.

30. Economic and political instability, a readiness on the part of some to manipulate others, and a defective understanding of religion help open the door to religious fundamentalism. This phenomenon afflicts all religious communities, and denies their long-standing tradition of coexistence. It wants to gain power, at times violently, over individual consciences, and over religion itself, for political reasons. I appeal urgently to all Jewish, Christian and Muslim religious leaders in the region to seek, by their example and by their teaching, to do everything in their power to eliminate this menace which indiscriminately and fatally affects believers of all religions. “To use the revealed word, the Sacred Scriptures or the name of God to justify our interests, our easy and convenient policies or our violence, is a very grave fault”.[23]

Migrants

31. Life in the Middle East is rich in diversity, but all too frequently restrictive and even violent. This affects all the inhabitants of the region and every aspect of their lives. Christians, who frequently find themselves in a delicate position, feel keenly, at times with weariness and little hope, the negative consequences of these conflicts and uncertainties. They experience frequent humiliation. They know from experience that they are often the victims when trouble breaks out. After taking an active part for centuries in the growth of their respective nations and helping to forge their identity and prosperity, many Christians are now seeking more favourable horizons and places of peace where their families will be able to live a dignified and secure life, and spaces of freedom where they can express their faith openly without fear of various constraints.[24] This is a heart-rending decision. It has a profound impact on individuals, families and Churches. It dismembers nations and contributes to the human, cultural and religious impoverishment of the Middle East. A Middle East without Christians, or with only a few Christians, would no longer be the Middle East, since Christians, together with other believers, are part of the distinctive identity of the region. All are responsible before God for one another. Thus it is important that politicians and religious leaders appreciate this and avoid those policies or partisan strategies which would result in a monochromatic Middle East that would be completely unreflective of its rich human and historic reality.

32. The Pastors of the Eastern Catholic Churches sui iuris realize with regret and concern that the numbers of their faithful are dwindling in the traditional Patriarchal territories, and for some time now they have had to develop a plan of pastoral care for emigrants.[25] I am certain that they are doing all in their power to exhort the faithful to continue to hope, not to leave their homelands and not to sell their possessions.[26] I ask them to continue to show affection for their priests and faithful in the diaspora, and I encourage them to stay in close contact with their families and Churches and above all to remain steadfast in their faith in God through their religious identity, built as it is upon venerable spiritual traditions.[27] By preserving this closeness to God and to their respective Churches, and by cultivating a deep love of their Latin brothers and sisters, they will greatly benefit the entire Catholic Church. I also exhort the Church’s Pastors in those places where Eastern Catholics have settled to welcome them with charity and fraternal esteem, to facilitate the bonds of communion between emigrants and their Churches of origin, and to enable them to celebrate in accordance with their own traditions and, wherever possible, to develop pastoral and parish activities.[28]

33. The Latin Church in the Middle East, which has also seen a dramatic decline in the number of its faithful, operates in different circumstances and has to deal with a variety of new pastoral challenges. In countries with strong economies, her Pastors have to respond to a massive influx of workers coming from Africa, the Far East and the Indian sub-continent. These groups, comprising many single men and women or entire families, face insecurity on two fronts. They are aliens in the country where they work, and they frequently experience discrimination and injustice. God has a special concern for the foreigner, who thus deserves respect. The way we treat strangers will be taken into account at the Last Judgement (cf. Mt 25:35, 43).[29]

34. These persons, downtrodden, at the mercy of others and unable to defend themselves, bound by contracts which are more or less limited, or even legal, are often the victims of violations of local laws and international conventions. They also face powerful pressure and grave religious restrictions. The task of their Pastors is both necessary and delicate. I encourage all the Catholic faithful and all priests, to whatever Church they belong, to manifest sincere communion and pastoral cooperation with the local Bishop, and I ask the Bishops to show paternal understanding towards all the Eastern faithful. It is by working together and above all by speaking with one voice that, in situations like these, all will be able to live and celebrate their faith, enriched by the diversity of spiritual traditions and remaining in contact with their Christian communities of origin. I also invite the leaders of those countries which receive these new groups to respect and defend their rights, and to allow them freely to express their faith by promoting religious freedom and the construction of places of worship. Religious freedom “could become the subject of dialogue between Christians and Muslims, a dialogue whose urgency and usefulness was reiterated by the Synod Fathers”.[30]

35. Some Catholics born in the Middle East, whether out of necessity, weariness or despair, make the dramatic decision to abandon the land of their ancestors, their family and their believing community. Others, full of hope, choose to remain in their country and community. I encourage the latter to reaffirm their praiseworthy commitment and to remain firm in the faith. Other Catholics decide on a course at least as heartrending as that of their brothers and sisters in the Middle East who emigrate; fleeing from unsure prospects in the hope of building a better future, they choose to come to the countries of the region in order to live and work. Native and immigrant Catholics together constitute the current reality of Catholicism in the region.

36. As Pastor of the universal Church, I wish to say a word to all the Catholics of the region, whether native or recently arrived, realizing that in recent years their proportionate numbers have come closer together: for God there is only one people and for believers only one faith! Strive to live in unity and respect, and in fraternal communion with one another in mutual love and esteem, so as to be credible witnesses to your faith in the death and resurrection of Christ! God will hear your prayer, he will bless your way of life and give you his Spirit to enable you to bear the burden of the day. For “where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom” (2 Cor 3:17). To Christians who were experiencing similar situations Saint Peter wrote the following words of exhortation which I willingly address to you: “Now who is there to harm you, if you are zealous for what is right? … Have no fear of them, nor be troubled, but in your hearts reverence Christ the Lord. Always be prepared to make a defence to anyone who calls you to account for the hope that is in you”
(1 Pet 3:13-15).

...

CONCLUSION​

95. “Fear not, little flock!” (Lk 12:32). With these words of Christ, I wish to exhort all the Pastors and Christian faithful in the Middle East courageously to keep alive the flame of divine love both in the Church and in all those places where they live and work.
...
Given at Beirut, in Lebanon, on 14 September 2012, the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, in the eighth year of my Pontificate.

BENEDICTUS PP. XVI


Read more on Ecclesia in Medio Oriente, Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation[/FIELDSET]
 

CedarLb

Legendary Member
[FIELDSET="elnashra"]
الراعي: الإرشاد الرسولي يرسم لنا الطريق للسير بشعوب الشرق نحو الوحدة
الإثنين 26 تشرين الثاني 2012

أكد البطريرك الماروني الكاردينال مار بشارة بطرس الراعي، أن "شعار "شركة ومحبة" هو شعار يتخذ دفعه من الإرشاد الرسولي الذي وقعه البابا بنديكتوس السادس عشر في لبنان وسلمه إيانا رسميا اثناء زيارته لبنان"، مشيرا إلى أن "هذا الإرشاد يرسم لنا الطريق للسير بشعب لبنان ومع شعوب بلدان الشرق الأوسط الذين يعيشون آلام النزاعات والتباعد إلى شركة الاتحاد بالله عموديا والوحدة بين جميع الناس أفقيا".ـ

وأشار في عظته خلال ترؤسه أول قداس إلهي ككاردينال في بازيليك القديس بطرس في الفاتيكان، إلى أن "المحبة هي الدافع إلى الشركة والرباط الذي يحفظها ويشدها ومريم العذراء هي مثال هذه الشركة وحاميتها".ـ
وشدد على أن "السلام في المنطقة لن يكون فعليا ما لم يتأسس على الاحترام الصادق للآخر المختلف".ـ
Source: elnashra[/FIELDSET]
 

CedarLb

Legendary Member
[FIELDSET="POST-SYNODAL APOSTOLIC EXHORTATION, ECCLESIA IN MEDIO ORIENTE"]
INTRODUCTION​
...
Migrants

31. Life in the Middle East is rich in diversity, but all too frequently restrictive and even violent. This affects all the inhabitants of the region and every aspect of their lives. Christians, who frequently find themselves in a delicate position, feel keenly, at times with weariness and little hope, the negative consequences of these conflicts and uncertainties. They experience frequent humiliation. They know from experience that they are often the victims when trouble breaks out. After taking an active part for centuries in the growth of their respective nations and helping to forge their identity and prosperity, many Christians are now seeking more favourable horizons and places of peace where their families will be able to live a dignified and secure life, and spaces of freedom where they can express their faith openly without fear of various constraints.[24] This is a heart-rending decision. It has a profound impact on individuals, families and Churches. It dismembers nations and contributes to the human, cultural and religious impoverishment of the Middle East. A Middle East without Christians, or with only a few Christians, would no longer be the Middle East, since Christians, together with other believers, are part of the distinctive identity of the region. All are responsible before God for one another. Thus it is important that politicians and religious leaders appreciate this and avoid those policies or partisan strategies which would result in a monochromatic Middle East that would be completely unreflective of its rich human and historic reality.
...
35. Some Catholics born in the Middle East, whether out of necessity, weariness or despair, make the dramatic decision to abandon the land of their ancestors, their family and their believing community. Others, full of hope, choose to remain in their country and community. I encourage the latter to reaffirm their praiseworthy commitment and to remain firm in the faith. Other Catholics decide on a course at least as heartrending as that of their brothers and sisters in the Middle East who emigrate; fleeing from unsure prospects in the hope of building a better future, they choose to come to the countries of the region in order to live and work. Native and immigrant Catholics together constitute the current reality of Catholicism in the region.

...
BENEDICTUS PP. XVI[/CENTER]


Read more on Ecclesia in Medio Oriente, Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation[/FIELDSET]
[FIELDSET=""]
البابا: أدمعت عيناي عندما رأيت بالإعلام خبر صلب مسيحيين ببلد غير مسيحي
الجمعة 02 أيار 2014


عبر البابا فرنسيس عن صلب مسيحيين في الرقة بالقول: "لقد أدمعت عيناي عندما رأيت على وسائل الإعلام خبر صلب مسيحيين في بلد غير مسيحي"، في إشارة إلى صلب الدولة الإسلامية في العراق وبلاد الشام "داعش" في الأيام الأخيرة لبعض سجنائها في الرقة، المدينة السورية التي تسيطر عليها.ـ

وفي عظته خلال قداس الصباح المعتاد بمقر إقامته في الفاتيكان "دوموس سانتا مارتا"، أوضح البابا أن "شهداء اليوم، مثل الرسل سعداء بإعتبارهم مستحقين للإهانة والمعاناة لأجل اسم المسيح"، مبينا أن "فرحهم هو فرح كثير من إخواننا وأخواتنا ممن لمسوا هذا الفرح في التاريخ، وهناك اليوم كثير من هؤلاء".ـ

وخلص البابا الى القول "فكروا فقط بأن مجرد حمل الإنجيل عقابه السجن في بعض البلدان، وارتداء الصليب يؤدي الى دفع غرامة، لكن القلب سعيد بكل هذا".ـ


Source: elnashra
[/FIELDSET]

[FIELDSET=""]Pope Francis at Mass: I weep for Christians still crucified today
2014-05-02 Vatican Radio

...
Then Pope Francis confessed: “I cried when I saw reports on the news of Christians crucified in a certain country, that is not Christian. Still today - he pointed out – there are these people who kill and persecute, in the name of God. Still today, "we see many who" like the apostles “rejoice that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor in Christ’s name". This - he said - "is the third icon today. The Joy of witness".

"First icon: Jesus with people, his love, the path that He has taught us, which we should follow. The second icon: the hypocrisy of these religious leaders of the people, who had people imprisoned with these many commandments, with this cold, hard legality, and who also paid to hide the truth. Third icon: the joy of the Christian martyrs, the joy of so many of our brothers and sisters who have felt this joy in history, this joy that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for Christ’s name. And today there are still so many! Just think that in some countries, you can go to jail for just carrying a Gospel. You may not wear a crucifix or you will be fined. But the heart rejoices. The three icons: let us look at them today. This is part of our history of salvation".

Source: http://www.news.va/en/news/pope-francis-at-mass-i-weep-for-christians-still-c[/FIELDSET]
 

CedarLb

Legendary Member
[FIELDSET="Patriarch Rai from France - May 2014"]
الراعي من سيدة لورد: نصلي لتستمر المسيحية بتغذية المجتمعات الشرق أوسطية بالقيم العدل والسلام واحترام الاختلاف والانفتاح
الأحد 04 أيار 2014 الساعة 18:06


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قال: "يذكرنا قداسة البابا بنيديكتوس السادس عشر في إرشاده الرسولي بعنوان "الكنيسة في الشرق الأوسط" بأن أرض الشرق الأوسط هي "أرض اختارها الله وباركها" منذ زمن البطاركة والأنبياء. وكانت المساحة الإنسانية والطبيعية لتجسد ابن الله من عذراء الناصرة. ورأت ارتفاع صليب المخلص، وكانت شاهدة على قيامته من الموت وعلى حلول الروح القدس. من هذه الأرض، أعلنت الكنيسة الناشئة للعالم إنجيل السلام، والحب، والأخوة (انظر رقم 8). تدعونا الكنيسة وتحثنا وتعضدنا على العمل من أجل السلام في العالم وفي الشرق الأوسط بوجه خاص. السلام هو قبل كل شيء العيش في انسجام مع الله، ومع أنفسنا، ومع الآخرين، ومع الطبيعة. هذا السلام يتجلى في مغارة ماسابيال ومحيطها، فتعبر عنه وتعكسه. السلام هو "ثمر الروح" (رسالة بولس إلى أهل غلاطية 5: 22)، و"عمل العدل" (أشعيا 32: 17)، ولكن يجب أن نلتمسه هدية ثمينة من الله (متى 7: 7-8). ويعبر الإرشاد الرسولي المذكور عن التزام الكنيسة التي لا تأل جهدا لمساعدة الشعوب على العيش بسلام عبر الدروب التي تؤدي إليه، أعني: تحقيق العدالة على اسس الحقيقة والمساواة، والمحبة؛ العمل على تنمية الإنسان والمجتمع؛ تعزيز المواثيق الدولية التي تعزز السلم بين الدول؛ ودعم مواقف الكرسي الرسولي حول مختلف النزاعات التي تدمي المنطقة، وبشأن وضع القدس والأماكن المقدسة (انظر رقم 10)".ـ

أضاف: "من أجل ضمان سلام عادل ودائم، لم يكف البابا فرنسيس عن الدعوة إلى الحل السياسي من خلال الحوار الذي يسمح بإيجاد حلول عادلة ودائمة (30 تشرين الثاني 2013 في زيارة حج إلى كنيسة الروم للملكيين الكاثوليك). وبكلامه عن المأساة الإنسانية في سوريا، أكد البابا بأنها "تحل بالحوار والتفاوض، مع احترام العدالة وكرامة كل إنسان، ولا سيما الضعفاء والعزل" (جلسة عامة تاريخ 18 أيلول 2013). وبالنسبة إليه، "الغفران، والحوار، والمصالحة هي عبارات السلام في سوريا، وفي الشرق الأوسط، وفي العالم بأسره" (صلاة مسائية من أجل السلام، 7 أيلول 2013)".ـ

وتابع: "نصلي من أجل أن تستمر المسيحية، الحاضرة منذ ألفي سنة، في تغذية المجتمعات الشرق أوسطية بالقيم الإنجيلية مثل قدسية الحياة البشرية، وكرامة الإنسان، والحريات العامة والحقوق الأساسية، والتضامن والترابط، وثقافة العدل والسلام، والوحدة في التنوع، وحقوق المواطنة، واحترام الاختلاف، ومعنى الديمقراطية، والحوار والمشاركة في حكم الدولة، والانفتاح، والاعتدال. ـ

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Source: NNA-LEB[/FIELDSET]
 
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