Pope Francis' meeting with Ayatollah Sistani, message of peace for humanity
The trip by Pope Francis with the motto from the Gospel Matthew: "You are all brothers" and his visit to the different places in Iraq, stand for his affection beyond religious prejudices.
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Institutions within Iraq and those in other countries, in reaction to Pope Francis' meeting with top Shia jurisprudent, stressed the potentials of the event to open ways for constructive dialogue between different Iraqi ethnicities in order to create peace and sustained security in the Arab country.
Religious and political individuals and institutions within Iraq and those in other countries have hailed the historical meeting of Pope Francis with senior Shia cleric, Ayatollah Ali Sistani, as the onset of peace and stability in Iraq.
The Middle East Council of Churches appreciated the pontiff and his efforts to alleviate the sufferings of war-stricken people in the Middle East, particularly Iraqi nation.
Michel Abs, Secretary General of the Middle East Council of Churches called the historical trip by Pope Francis in line with boosting fraternity with all people in the most critical time of the damaged country and said," This is a sign of love and healing. This is a call for resistance against darkness, violence and annihilation."
He added," The trip by Pope Francis with the motto from the Gospel Matthew: "You are all brothers" and his visit to the different places in Iraq, stand for his affection beyond religious prejudices."
He noted," The papal trip to Iraq is an inclusive ideological and national turning point in long years because the meetings have embraced different Iraqi groups. This trip has been the instance of reconciliation among children of a wealthy Iraq following years of war which had turned them strangers for each other. Undoubtedly the trip by Pope Francis will make a landmark in the relations of various ethnicities and religions of a unified society drowned in the interests of the international powers.
Muslim Council of Elders chaired by Sheikh Ahmed el-Tayeb has also issued a statement stating that the Iraq visit by Pope Francis is enthusiastically pursued and finds it a great opportunity for boosting peace and convergence with all victims of violence in the region and across the globe.
The Muslim Council of Elders has called the trip as historical and a healing for the wounds of Iraqi nation following years of war and destruction providing the people with the hope for a better future based on tolerance and acceptance of others.
Sami al-Massoudi, head of Iraqi High Commission for Hajj and Umrah lauded the trip by Pope Francis as the grounds for deepening and strengthening the religious and humanitarian ties between ethnicities.
Ahmad al-Sahaf, head of the organizing committee for the visit of Pope to Iraq stressed that Iraqi nation is preparing for a new page of development, construction and stability they are quite deserve to enjoy.
Salam al-Shemri, member of Saeroun Alliance in Iraqi parliament noted that the trip by world's highest Christian leader amid the present situation stands for the fact that the world is truly paying attention to the Mesopotamia region.
He called the papal visit to Iraq as a way for new horizons of construction and tourism for the country.
Martin Hormuz, Iraqi priest vowed that the meeting between Pope Francis and top Shia jurisprudent Ayatollah Ali Sistani will be fruitful conveying the message of peace for world people.
Father Hormuz, in a radio interview, noted that the Iraqi government should pay special attention to the spiritual aspect of the papal visit that the people are equal beyond their religion.
He added that the meeting can open the ways for constructive dialogue and play an active role in bringing balance among all Iraqi groups.