Works and Education: Francisco Praises Moroccan Catholics

in NEWS INTERNAZIONALI/News Uk

By Souad Sbai

Upon his arrival in Morocco, Pope Francis spared a thought for the Moroccan Catholic Church, praising its contribution “in the construction of a prosperous and solidary nation, taking into account people’s common good” and in particular its “social works and the works in the field of education carried out through its schools open to students of every denomination, religion and origin” and as “promoters and defenders of human fraternity”.

Interreligious dialogue, protection of migrants and defense of the environment: these are the key points of Pope Francis’ visit to Morocco and his meeting with King Mohammed VI. The first that welcomed the pontiff in Rabat was the rain, a sign of blessing according to the tradition of the North African country, a land to which certainly does no lack of hospitality and that gave dates and almond milk to the Holy Father. But above all, to welcome and listen to the Pope during his 28th international trip, was the embrace of a crowd of between twenty-five and forty thousand people who were happy and excited to be able to experience a historical moment. A historical moment that the whole world is looking at.

The person in charge of making the presentation of Pope Francis was King Mohammed VI through a speech that was read, not surprisingly, in four different languages: Arabic, Spanish, English and French. The sovereign’s words underline how this event marks a real “mutual opening and fertilization” as well as a “symbol of balance”.

“We have met each other deliberately between the Mediterranean and the Atlantic – explained Mohammed VI – with the aim of representing a symbol of exchange between Africa and Europe. Because we want this visit to be a sign of hope.” Later, he placed special emphasis on the fight against poverty and corruption and on climate change, but also and above all on the fight against radicalism, the result of ignorance that can be fought through education.

For Pope Francis, who thanked with gratitude the welcome received and the affection shown and who recalled John Paul II’s visit to Casablanca in 1985, this is a further step forward in the path taken with the recent trip to Abu Dhabi to sign the declaration on human fraternity, thanks to which he hopes to “pave the way for a fruitful and respectful spirit of collaboration” able to put an end to fanaticism and fundamentalism. Together, as believers, following the common values ​​of peace, solidarity and respect for the differences and dignity of each one. He also praised the International Conference on the Rights of Religious Minorities in the Islamic World hold in Marrakech 2016 for condemning all sorts of religious instrumentalization to justify violent or discriminatory acts.

Pope Francis also dedicated words of appreciation to the International Conference on Climate Change and the Intergovernmental Conference on the Global Compact for safe, orderly and regular migration. Both celebrated in Morocco.

The Holy Father also dedicated a few words to the Moroccan Catholic Church, praising his contribution “to the construction of a prosperous and solidary nation, taking into account the people’s common good”; praising in particular the “social works and the works in the field of education that they have realized through their schools that are open to students of every denomination, religion and origin” and the fact of being “promoters and defenders of human fraternity”.

At the conclusion of the speech, held on the esplanade near Hassan Tower, Pope Francis also visited the Mausoleum of Mohammed V and the tomb of Hassan II, where he left a floral tribute, before going to the Royal Palace because of a courtesy visit.

An intense and certainly historic day that concluded with an important off-program: the signing of a joint declaration with King Mohammed VI to recognize the uniqueness and holiness of the Holy City of Jerusalem / Al Qods Acharif, recognized by both as “common heritage of Humanity and that, especially for the faithful of the three monotheistic religions, represents a meeting place and the symbol of peaceful coexistence.”

 

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