One can’t be a Christian and live under the law of retaliation, said Pope Francis in Mozambique on Friday.
“The equity of violence is always an endless spiral; and its cost is very high,” he said, pleading for “another way” because “our peoples have a right to peace. You have a right to peace! — he cried out.
It was in the capital’s suburb of Zimpeto that the Pope celebrated the only Mass of his three-day visit to Mozambique. The persistent rain notwithstanding, a jubilant crowd welcomed Pope Francis, amid festive songs and dances, in the packed National Stadium.
“No family, no group of neighbors, no ethnic group, even less so no country has a future, if the engine that unites, aggregates and covers the differences is vengeance and hatred,” he stressed in his homily. On the contrary, the Holy Father invited to “treat others with the mercy and goodness with which we would like to be treated.”
To love and to be good
It’s not “an attitude of the weak but of the strong,” he continued. This doesn’t call for overwhelming activism, but above all for attention given to others…It’s the best thermometer to discover ideologies of all sorts, which tend to instrumentalize the poor and create unjust situations in view of political or personal interests.
To love and to do good “is much more than to ignore the person who has harmed us or to see to it that our lives don’t cross again. It’s a commandment that aims at active benevolence, disinterested and extraordinary towards those who have wounded us. It’s about “loving one another, helping one another and lending to one another without expecting a return.”
Moreover, the Pontiff put the country on guard against “those that approach one pretending to help but who have other interests.” “It’s sad when this happens between brothers of the same country who let themselves be corrupted. It’s very dangerous to accept that that is the price to pay for foreign aid.”