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Carlos Osoro Sierra

Cardinal, Archbishop of Madrid
Eminences, Excellences, Venerables and dear friends: how good and salutary it is to build peace! How good the human heart feels, when we commit to build bridges, not walls! How important it is to take clearcut decisions and bet on the culture of encounter! Therefore, let us lay down the weapons that lead to clashes, break, violence, and reject among the peoples. For all of us these days in Madrid have been a gift: to be able to express what enables us to give rise, support, and participate in an active engagement, which starts from dialogue and meeting, and fights divisions, breaks, clashes, violence, discrimination, and war. This is and was a gift.

We experienced and were called not to be islands, not to sow prejudices, enmities or convictions. We sowed seeds of peace. We leave here with the name of “sowers of peace” where we live, in midst of the tasks and responsibilities we have. 

It is still necessary that we question ourselves about that same question God addressed to Cain after Abel’s murder: “Where is your brother?” The globalization of indifference makes us turn in on ourselves and causes us to give the same answer that Cain gave: “I don’t know, am I my brother’s keeper?”

Humanity carries the calling to brotherhood in itself. Therefore, the importance of this meeting, which makes us recognize to be “sowers of peace”, is evident for those who are not prepared to forget the project of our Creator: it is the original calling to be son and brother. 

We all want to commit and work to raise awareness of the fact that brotherhood is the basis and the path for peace. I want to impart you these blessings at the end of this meeting. I believe that these days have been the joint effort of all of us. I just want to express what is already in your hearts

1. Blessed are we, when we listen to those who suffered the degrading experience of war in their flesh and who often live by us.

2. Blessed are we, when we understand that war is a serious and deep wound to fraternity among the peoples, even when it takes place far away. 

3. Blessed are we, when we are not indifferent in the face of the many conflicts of the world, and when they affect our own live.

4. Blessed are those, who feel close to the people living in lands where weapons impose terror, and destruction, and let their closeness be felt. 

5. Blessed are those who, with the prayer and the service, convey their love to those who are wounded, starving, displaced, refugees, and to those who live in fear. 

6. Blessed are those, who are aware of what peace means for men and women and address their call to refrain from killing the brother to those who sow violence and death. 

7. Blessed are those, who commit to the paths of dialogue and meeting, of forgiveness and reconciliation to build peace and restore trust and hope.

8. Blessed are those, who devote their life to announce that the enemy is a brother, whom we cannot get rid of, but whom we can persuade to respect everybody’s right to life and to live it fully.