Source: Pax Christi
Pope Francis has called for a "special day of prayer and fasting for peace in the world" this Friday, 23 February 2018. The day of prayer is especially aimed at prayers for peace in the conflict-stricken nations of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and South Sudan. Catholics and other Christians as well as followers of other religions and people of good are invited to join in this event.
"In the face of the tragic continuation of conflicts in different parts of the world, I invite all the faithful to a special day of prayer and fasting for peace on 23 February, the Friday of the first week of Lent," Pope Francis announced. "We will offer it especially for the populations of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and of South Sudan."
"Our Heavenly Father always listens to his sons and daughters who cry to him in their pain and anguish," the Pope continued. "I make a heartfelt appeal so that we too listen to that cry and each of us, in our own conscience, ask ourselves before God, 'What can I do for peace?'"
"Certainly," he said, "we can pray, but not only that: Each one can concretely say NO to violence inasmuch as it depends on him or her. Because all the victories gained by violence are false victories; but to work for peace does good to us all!"
Pax Christi International is offering the following resources for the day:
• A Meditation on Praying for Peace www.paxchristi.net/sites/default/files/a_meditation_for_peace.pdf
• A Litany of Peace (PDF) www.paxchristi.net/sites/default/files/a_litany_for_peace.pdf
• Support the work of Pax Christi International member organisations in the DR Congo www.paxchristi.net/member-organisations/country/congo%2C-the-democratic-republic-of-the and South Sudan www.paxchristi.net/member-organisations/country/south-sudan
• Read about Bishop Paride Taban, www.paxchristi.net/news/south-sudan-bishop-paride-taban-founder-member-organisation-holy-trinity-peace-village-kuron#sthash.2HbLE4k2.E8mYpE7d.dpbs former International Board member of Pax Christi International and founder of Holy Trinity Peace Village Kuron in South Sudan, a member organisation of Pax Christi International
• Read background papers written for the Catholic Nonviolence Initiative by participants in the Nonviolence and Just Peace Conference (Rome, April 2016) from South Sudan https://nonviolencejustpeacedotnet.files.wordpress.com/2016/05/ashworth-john-south-sudan.pdf and the DR Congo https://nonviolencejustpeacedotnet.files.wordpress.com/2016/05/nganya-jean-jacques-de-christ-dr-congo.pdf
• Read excerpts and background information, watch videos, and more from the December 2016 "Nonviolence in Africa" consultation www.paxchristi.net/news/nonviolence-africa-creating-future-hope-pax-christi-international-conference-african-member#sthash.4rHnYab5.dpbs which included representatives from member organisations in the DR Congo and South Sudan. Read the final conference statement here: www.paxchristi.net/sites/default/files/final_conference_statement_press.pdf