Wednesday, April 05, 2017

Quote of the Day

“I welcome you with joy.

I like to think that the most important task we must do together, in humanity, is the work 'of the ear': listening to each other. Listening to each other, without haste to give an answer. Welcoming the word of our brother, our sister, and then thinking of giving my own. But the capacity to listen, this is very important.

It is interesting: when people have this capacity for listening, they speak with a low and calm tone... [but] when they do not have this, they speak loudly and even shout. Among brothers, we must all speak, listen to each other and speak slowly, calmly, looking for the way together. And when we listen to each other and speak to each other, we are already on the path.

Thank you for this journey you are taking, and I ask God, almighty and merciful, to bless you. And I ask you to pray for me.
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While that was the Pope's greeting this morning to a group of four British Imams – brought by the English primate Cardinal Vincent Nichols in the wake of last month's attack at the Houses of Parliament – given what's said, or simply not heard, across much shorter divides these days, the message is something seemingly everyone can reflect on, all the more as the "journey" of Holy Week draws near.

On an even bigger news-front, meanwhile, today's gathering serves to further highlight the Vatican's next major strike on Catholic-Muslim relations: Francis' rapidly-arranged visit to Cairo in late April – only the second-ever papal trip to Egypt, headlined by a global peace summit in the "Muslim Vatican" at Al-Azhar, which froze its dialogue with Rome during the pontificate of Benedict XVI.