Archbishop Aquila echoes Pope Francis’ plea for Syria

Archbishop Aquila echoes Pope Francis’ plea for Syria

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During his weekly address to those gathered for the Angelus prayers in St. Peter’s Square this past Sunday, Pope Francis delivered an impassioned appeal for peace in Syria and invited the entire world to fast and pray on Sept. 7.

“How much suffering, how much devastation, how much pain has the use of arms carried in its wake in that martyred country, especially among civilians and the unarmed!” said the pope. “I tell you that those terrible images from recent days are burned into my mind and heart. There is a judgment of God and of history upon our actions which are inescapable! Never has the use of violence brought peace in its wake. War begets war, violence begets violence.”

The pope then proclaimed Saturday, Sept. 7 as a day for the entire Catholic Church to pray and fast for peace in Syria, the Middle East and the entire world. “I also invite each person, including our fellow Christians, followers of other religions and all men of good will, to participate, in whatever way they can, in this initiative,” he said.

Most Rev. Samuel J. Aquila, Archbishop of Denver, invited residents of northern Colorado to answer the pope’s call.

“Let us unite our hearts with the Holy Father and beseech God to soften the hearts of those who see each other as enemies. We must insist that violence never leads to peace and urge genuine dialogue as the way forward,” said Archbishop Aquila. “I call upon all Catholics in the Archdiocese to take part in the vigil that we will hold from 7 p.m. to midnight at the Cathedral Basilica in downtown Denver, where we will pray for peace abroad and here in Colorado.”

The archbishop also invited all members of other religious groups and people of good will to take part in the day of prayer and fasting as well as the prayer vigil.