Mozambique – Legacy of Pope’s visit: a hymn to hope, peace, reconciliation

(ANS – Maputo) – The journey of Pope Francis to Mozambique has been over for a few days now, but the words spoken and the gestures made continue to have an echo that does not fade away. “The evangelical footsteps of Pope Francis have marked Mozambican soil and his words will resonate for a long time to express the consolation and the truth that we needed,” says a missionary volunteer.

Today, the country is experiencing a situation of extreme violence in the north, in Cabo Delgado, with house fires, machete murders, mutilations … There is no clear motivation behind these gestures, even though Cabo Delgado is a very rich land of graphite, diamonds, oil, gas and wood, which generate so much interest, largely economic …

Another reality that afflicts the Mozambicans are the signs left by the cyclones Kenneth and Idai. The country has received humanitarian aid, but the population still suffers from the lack of acceptable living conditions.

The Holy Father has been attentive to the current state of affairs and has stressed the importance of looking at the life of others with the same love with which God sees it.

“It is difficult to speak of reconciliation when the wounds caused by so many years of discord are still open … Nevertheless, Jesus invites us to love and do good … Overcoming the times of division and violence implies the daily commitment of each of us to have an attentive and active gaze that leads us to treat others with that mercy and goodness with which we want to be treated,” said the Pontiff on September 6 during Mass in the Zimpeto Stadium.

The Holy Father continued by clarifying how to cultivate the virtues that lead to the life that the Gospel offers to everyone: “Mozambique has a territory full of natural and cultural riches, but paradoxically with an enormous amount of population below the poverty line. Sometimes it also seems that those who approach us with the alleged desire to help have other interests … ‘It will not be like this among you’ (Mt 20:26). With His words, Jesus urges us to be protagonists of another lifestyle, that of His Kingdom: here and now, seeds of joy and hope, peace and reconciliation.”

Finally, at his interreligious meeting with young people, the Pope also mentioned the pastor’s priority in being present among young people and encouraged everyone to experience the joy of the struggle for peace and reconciliation. “When everything seems to be still and stagnant, when personal problems disturb us, social problems do not find the right answers, it is not good to give up … It is always a question of dreaming together, as you are doing today!”

The Holy Father thus took his leave of the country, but left the signs of God’s presence on the paths he traveled and in the hearts of Mozambicans.

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