On October 16, Pope Francis spoke to the Fourth World Meeting of Popular Movements. This meeting brings together the Vatican and the representatives of a number of groups across the globe who stand up for the rights of the poor and excluded. Our Holy Father’s message was so frank and poignant that for a few columns I decided to share a few excerpts of our Pope’s message without comment. Here are the last few paragraphs of the Holy Father’s message:
Sisters and brothers, I am convinced that “the world can be seen more clearly from the peripheries”. We must listen to the peripheries, open the doors to them and allow them to participate. The suffering of the world is better understood alongside those who suffer. In my experience, when people, men and women, have suffered injustice, inequality, abuse of power, deprivations, and xenophobia in their own flesh – in my experience, I can see that they understand much better what others are experiencing and are able to help them realistically to open up paths of hope. How important it is that your voice be heard, represented in all the places where decisions are made. Offer your voice in a collaborative spirit; speak with moral certainty of what must be done. Strive to make your voice heard; but please, in those places, do not allow yourself to be constrained or corrupted. These two words are heavy with meaning, but I won’t talk about them now.
Let us reaffirm the commitment we made in Bolivia: to place the economy at the service of the people in order to build a lasting peace based on social justice and on care for our Common Home. Continue to promote your agenda of land, work and housing. Continue to dream together. And thank you, thank you very much, thank you for letting me dream with you.
Let us ask God to pour out His blessings on our dreams. Let us not lose our hope. Let us remember the promise that Jesus made to His disciples: “I will be with you always,” and remembering it, at this moment of my life, I want to tell you that I will also be with you. The important thing is to realise that He is with you. Thank you.
You can read Pope Francis’ complete message at tinyurl.com/lsia-popular-movements. Working together, we can help take care of our common home.