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Sunday, February 21, 2016
#PopeFrancis “For a world without the death penalty.” at #Angelus - Text - FULL Video
Pope Fancis speaking at the Angelus on Sunday. - RV
(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis reflected on his Apostolic Voyage to Mexico during his Angelus address in St Peter’s Square on the Second Sunday of Lent.
The Sunday Gospel tells the story of the Transfiguration of Jesus; Pope Francis said his journey to Mexico was also “an experience of transfiguration,” where “the Lord showed the light of His glory through the body of His Church, of the holy People who live in that land.”
The Pope said the focus of his pilgrimage to Mexico was the visit to the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Meditating before the miraculous image, the Holy Father reflected on the love and compassion the Blessed Virgin has for the many pilgrims who come to her with their sorrows. “From all over America,” he said, “they come to pray at the place where the “Virgen Morenita” showed herself to the Indian Juan Diego, giving a beginning to the evangelization of the continent and to its new civilization, the fruit of the encounter between different cultures.”
And this, he said, is the true heritage Mexico has received from the Lord: “to guard the riches of diversity, and, at the same time, to manifest the harmony of the common faith.” Pope Francis said he had come to Mexico, like his predecessors, to confirm the faith of the Mexican people, but also to be confirmed by them — and he pointed to the witness of Mexican families, of young people, of priests and religious, of workers and of prisoners; “a testimony of a clear and strong faith, the testimony of a lived faith, of a faith that transfigures life.”
Pope Francis offered thanks “to the Lord and to the Virgin of Guadalupe” for the Voyage; and also expressed his gratitude to all those who welcomed him to Mexico and made the journey so successful.
Finally, Pope Francis praised the Most Holy Trinity for his meeting with his “dear brother Kirill,” the Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia, which took place in Cuba on his way to Mexico. The Pope concluded his address with the prayer that “the Mother of God might continue to guide us in the journey to unity.”
(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis has said that “all Christians and people of good will are called today to work not only for the abolition of the death penalty,” but also to improve conditions in prisons, out of respect for the human dignity of prisoners.
In particular, the Holy Father appealed “to the consciences of government leaders” that they might join the “international consensus for the abolition of the death penalty” — and spoke directly to Catholic leaders, asking them, as a “courageous and exemplary act,” to not carry out any death sentences during the Holy Year of Mercy.
The Holy Father made his remarks following the Angelus on Sunday, in the context of an international convention for the abolition of death penalty set to take place in Rome on Monday. The convention, promoted by the Sant’Egidio Community, has for its title “For a world without the death penalty.”
“I hope,” the Pope said, “that this symposium can give a renewed impulse to efforts for the abolition of capital punishment.” He said growing opposition to the death penalty, even as an instrument of legitimate social defence, was a sign of hope. Modern society, he continued has the means of fighting crime without definitively taking from criminals the possibility of redemption. He placed the question of capital punishment within the context of a system of justice that continues to conform more closely “to the dignity of man and the design of God for and for society.” “The commandment, ‘Thou shalt not kill’,” Pope Francis said, “has absolute value, and concerns both the innocent and the guilty,” and even criminals “maintain the inviolable right to life, the gift of God.”