September 17 2019 20:30 | Almudena Square


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Women and men of different religions, at the invitation of the Community of Sant’Egidio and of the Archdiocese of Madrid, gathered as pilgrims in this beautiful city to search for new paths for Peace, 80 years after the Second World War begun. 
We have prayed, we have listened to the noiseless moan and cry of those who are left out of the world’s prosperity, in the midst of wars, in lands where nothing grows any more, as if they were not men and women like us. 
We are worried for future generations, because we see the only planet for all being consumed as if it belonged only to few people. Because we see the re-emergence of the cult of force and nationalistic divisions, that have caused great destructions throughout the history. Because terrorism continues to target helpless people. Because the dream of Peace seems to have grown weaker.
In an increasingly interdependent world, the old temptation that we can solve great problems by ourselves is reviving. Wars and peace, epidemics, security and cybersecurity, the displacement of populations, the planet’s sustainability and global warming, the task to end the nuclear risk and the reduction of inequalities are far larger than one single nation’s scope.
No, we need dialogue and cooperation.
We cannot leave the weakest ones behind the wall of indifference, those struck down by violence and contempt because they are different, pray or speak in another language. We cannot let air, water, land and human resources be carelessly wasted: otherwise, unbearable burdens and bills are passed on to future generations
We call upon everybody, the policy makers, the wealthiest ones in the world, men and women of goodwill, to provide the resources to prevent millions of children dying each year for the lack of healthcare, and to send to school millions of children who do not have access to education. This will be a sign of hope for everybody.
We must not hide ourselves behind a wall of indifference! God does not want separation among brothers. God does not want wars. We have learned that: those who employ God’s name to justify war, violence and terrorism, are desecrating God’s name.
Believers in God discover the world as a common home, inhabited by the family of peoples. Religions, as well as individuals and peoples, have today two paths ahead of them: either to work for the spiritual unification, which total economic globalization has failed to produce; or, to be exploited by those who sanctify borders and conflicts.
First of all, we commit to praying. We ask, for the world and for us all the gift of God’s eyes that release us from blindness and make us recognize the others as brothers and sisters. We ask God for the patient strength of dialogue, the power of a wise and meek language that speaks to the heart and dissolves separation and antagonism.
Yes, Peace with no borders is the deep need of our world. With God’s help and with prayer, Peace with no borders is possible.
Madrid, September 17, 2019