When Francesc was climbing in the morning a specially prepared wooden platform for him to St. Martin’s Cathedral, when asked during a television broadcast how he felt, he joked: “I’m still alive.”
On Monday, as on the previous day in Budapest and upon his arrival in Bratislava, the 84-year-old Pope endured the rigors of his busy visit schedule.
The meeting began with a meeting with the President of Slovakia, Zuzana Caputova, after which Francesek delivered a speech to the Slovak political class.
“We need fraternity to promote integration, which is increasingly necessary. It is urgently needed now, at a time when, after many difficult months of the pandemic, there is an economic recovery that is eager to be achieved through plans for the reconstruction of Europe. The union.” He wished that Europe, distinguished by its solidarity, should enter the “centre of history”.
He called for the weakest to be taken care of and for no one to be stigmatized or discriminated against. “We must strive to build a future in which laws apply equally to all, on the basis of a justice that is never sold,” the Pope declared.
He said that a serious fight against corruption must be carried out and “the rule of law must first be strengthened and propagated”.
Francesc was greatly impressed during an afternoon meeting with the Jewish community in Bratislava’s Repne Square, where the synagogue stood, which was demolished by the Communists in 1969 to build a road. Only pieces of the wall remained from the temple, assembled in a metal basket.
– Faced with the history of the Jewish people, marked by tragic and indescribable humiliation, we confess shame: how many times has the name of the Most High, the Unbroken, been used for unimaginable and inhuman acts! Pope said.
He stressed: “How many persecuted people said: God is with us…but they were not with God.”
As Francis declared: “We are united – I repeat – in condemning all forms of violence and all forms of anti-Semitism and striving not to tarnish the image of God in human creation.”
During the meeting in the cathedral, he reminded dignitaries, priests, nuns, and nuns: “The church is not a fortress, but a pole, a fortress set high overlooking the world with a distance and self-sufficiency. Here in Bratislava, the castle is already there and it is very beautiful. “
He stressed that the church is a group that wants to attract people to Christ. He called for short 10-minute speeches.
The Pope, stigmatizing the wrong attitudes of the people of the Church, said that he had received a letter from the bishop about one of the ambassadors. The bishop wrote to him: “We have been 400 years under Turkish occupation, 50 years under communism, but seven years with this ambassador was something worse.”
On Tuesday, Francis will go to Presov to attend the Byzantine Liturgy. He will also visit Kosice, where he will be in a large gypsy estate. He will meet young people on the field.
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