FULL TEXT Homily of Pope Francis on All Souls Day "These tombs that speak, cry out, cry out themselves, they cry out: "Peace!" at Military Cemetery Mass + Video



 French Military Cemetery in Rome
Tuesday, November 2, 2021


A writing comes to mind, at the door of a small cemetery, in the north: "You who pass, think of your steps, and of your steps think of the last step". You who pass .


Life is a journey, we are all on the way. All of us, if we want to do something in life, are on the way. Which is not a walk, not even a labyrinth, no, it's a walk . On the way, we pass in front of so many historical facts, in front of so many difficult situations. And also in front of the cemeteries. The advice of this cemetery is: "You who pass, stop the step and think, of your steps, at the last step". We will all have one last step. Someone can tell me: “Father, don't be so mournful, don't be tragic”. But that's the truth. The important thing is that that last step finds us on the way, not turning on a walk; in the journey of life and not in an endless labyrinth. To be on the way so that the last step will find us walking. This is the first thought I would like to say and it comes from my heart.

The second thought is the graves. These people - good people - died in war, they died because they were called to defend their homeland, to defend values, to defend ideals and, many other times, to defend sad and lamentable political situations. And it is the victims, the victims of the war, who eat the children of the homeland. And I think of Anzio, of Redipuglia; I am thinking of the Piave in '14 - many have remained there -; I think of the Normandy beach: forty thousand, in that landing! But it doesn't matter, they fell ...

I stopped in front of a tomb there: “ Unknown. Died for France. 1944 ". Not even the name. In the heart of God is the name of all of us, but this is the tragedy of war. I am sure that all these who have gone in good will, called from their homeland to defend it, are with the Lord. But we, who are on the way, do we fight sufficiently so that there are no wars? Why aren't the economies of countries fortified by the arms industry? Today the sermon should be looking at the tombs: “Dead for France”; some have names, a few others don't. But these tombs are a message of peace: “Stop, brothers and sisters, stop! Stop, arms manufacturers, stop! ”.

These two thoughts I leave you. “You who pass, think, of your steps, at the last step”: may it be in peace, in peace of heart, in peace everything. The second thought: These tombs that speak, cry out, cry out to themselves, they cry out: "Peace!".

May the Lord help us to sow and keep these two thoughts in our hearts.

FULL TEXT + Image Source: Vatican.va - Screenshot