Pope at Lateran University: All called to build peace
By Vatican News
“We cannot remain indifferent, limiting ourselves to invoking peace”, said Pope Francis said on Thursday night. Rather, “educating for peace requires us to give relieve to those, unfortunate many [people], who are condemned to death or forced to abandon their loved ones, their homes, their countries of origin”.
He was speaking at the inauguration of a new exhibit entitled, “Calligraphy for Dialogue: Promoting the Culture of Peace through Culture and Art”, where 24 works by Saudi artist, Othman Alkhuzaiem, invite visitors to contemplate dialogue and peace through the beauty of calligraphic art.
Called to build and protect peace
In his remarks, the Holy Father emphasized that everyone is “called daily to build and protect peace, turning our prayer to God that He may give us this gift”. Pope Francis noted that, “for those called to educate in the light of their religion or belief, this commitment also becomes a way of bearing witness, and helping others to find an alternative model” to other materialistic and horizontal models.
The necessity for dialogue
But educating for peace is the task not only of believers, but of all people of good will, the Pope said. They will recognize how necessary dialogue is, not only for “preventing and resolving conflicts”, but “for bringing out the values and virtues that God has written in the heart of every human person, and made evident in the order of creation”.
To those present, Pope Francis said, “your work today will conclude with the opening of an exhibition that present works whose language is meant to be dialogical”.
The exhibition is part of a Study Day organized at the University, within the context of the world event entitled "Rebuilding the Global Educational Pact", scheduled for 14 May 2020, and launched by Pope Francis – and is organized together with the Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Rome, and in collaboration with the United Nations University for Peace.
Cardinal Tauran, a man of dialogue
The exhibition also celebrates the memory of Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, former President of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, who died on 5 July last year. His last official visit as a representative of the Holy See was to Saudi Arabia.
In his remarks, Pope Francis paid tribute to the late Cardinal, who he called “a man of dialogue and a peacemaker”. His whole life, the Pope said, “was projected in the perspective of dialogue” – dialogue as a Christian with God; with various peoples, governments and international organizations as a diplomat; and finally, with other faith traditions, as President of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue.
Pray constantly for peace
At the close of his address, Pope Francis called on everyone "to pray ceaselessly, and to make every effort so that through an authentic Global Educational Pact, an era of peace for the whole human family can be inaugurated".
The "Calligraphy for Dialogue" exhibition opens to the public on Monday 4 November, and closes on Friday 22 November.