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» 11/30/2005 14:43
VATICAN - WORLD AIDS DAY
Pope: "I feel near to people with AIDS and their families"

Benedict XVI encouraged those fighting against AIDS and made an appeal to the international and church communities for World AIDS Day. The Pope also recalled the Shoah, "an indelible disgrace in the history of mankind".



Vatican City (AsiaNews) – Benedict XVI made an appeal for people with AIDS in anticipation of World AIDS Day set to be marked tomorrow. The Pope encouraged all those fighting to overcome the terrible virus, saying he is near to those who suffer from it and to their families. He also exhorted the international and church communities to show solidarity. "Tomorrow, 1 December, is World AIDS Day, an initiative of the United Nations aiming to draw attention to the scourge of AIDS and to invite the international community to a renewed commitment in the work of prevention and support for those who are affected. Relevant statistics are alarming!" he said at the end of the general audience.

"Following Christ's example closely, the Church has always considered the care of infirm people to be an integral part of its mission. I therefore encourage the many initiatives under way to overcome this sickness, especially by church communities, and I feel close to people with AIDS and their families, invoking upon them the Lord's help and comfort."

In his address to around 25,000 people who turned up for the audience in St Peter's Square despite the grey and rainy weather, Benedict XVI talked about Shoah, "an indelible disgrace in the history of mankind". And thus Benedict XVI referred again – after the strong words he used in the synagogue in Cologne – to the extermination of the Jews, commenting on Psalm 136, "By the rivers of Babylon", which "has as its background the land of exile, with its rivers and canals, the very same which irrigated the Babylonian plains, where the deported Jews were". He added: "This is almost a symbolic foresight of the extermination camps where the Jewish people – in the century we have just left behind – were sent in an infamous operation of death, which remains as an indelible disgrace in the history of mankind."


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See also
02/12/2009 VATICAN
Pope: Unacceptable to deny, minimize Holocaust, "a crime against God and against humanity"
05/28/2006 POLAND
Pope: Auschwitz, where Hitler wanted to kill God, and where man cried out at his "silence"
12/01/2004 WORLD AIDS DAY - VATICAN
The Vatican on Aids: "Chastity and fidelity, means to defeat the fatal virus"
01/24/2007 VATICAN
Pope: the media must respect children
10/23/2005 VATICAN
Angelus: the Eucharist, the seed from which missionary vocations are born

Editor's choices
SYRIA
I will miss you Fr Frans, you inspired us all, says Syrian Jesuit
by Tony Homsy*A young priest from the Society of Jesus remembers the life and work of Fr Frans van der Lugt, who was killed in Homs after he refused to abandon residents beleaguered by hunger and war. "He gave and continues to give everything for the Church, Syria, and peace. His story and qualities made him an exceptional missionary and witness to the Gospel." Reprinted courtesy of 'The Jesuit Post'.
FRANCE - IRAQ
Chaldean Patriarch on the uncertain future of eastern Christians, a bridge between the West and Islam
by Mar Louis Raphael I SakoThe wars in Iraq, Libya and Afghanistan have made things worse for their peoples, especially minorities. As Western policies have been a failure, fundamentalism has grown with the Arab Spring losing out to extremism. Muslim authorities have a role in protecting rights and religious freedom. The presence of Christians in the Middle East is crucial for Muslims.
CHINA - EUROPEAN UNION
Xi Jinping returns home full of deals and silence
by Bernardo CervelleraThe Chinese president signed agreements worth tens of billions of Euros in France, Germany, the Netherlands, and Belgium. He also stayed clear of any press conference. At the College of Europe in Bruges, he presented his dream of a new trillion-dollar Silk Road. Yet, he also made it clear that at home, the monopoly of power stays with the Party, squashing any dream for political reform in China. On the Internet, netizens disagree with him.

Dossier
by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
by Lazzarotto Angelo S.
pp. 528
by Bernardo Cervellera
pp. 240
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