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By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

8/19/2014 (8 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Pontiff answers wide-ranging questions on flight back from South Korea

Answering a wide array of questions, which included the proper response to the persecution of Christians and other religious minorities by fundamentalists of the Islamic State in Iraq, Pope Francis said that "it is legitimate to halt the unjust aggressor." Returning from his history-making visit, Pope Francis told reporters onboard the plane that the word "halt" does not mean to "bomb."

Pope Francis said that 'it is legitimate to halt the unjust aggressor.' Returning from his history-making visit, Pope Francis told reporters onboard the plane that the word 'halt' does not mean to 'bomb.'

Pope Francis said that "it is legitimate to halt the unjust aggressor." Returning from his history-making visit, Pope Francis told reporters onboard the plane that the word "halt" does not mean to "bomb."

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

8/19/2014 (8 months ago)

Published in Living Faith

Keywords: Pope Francis, aggression, South Korea, Albania, news conference


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The Pope said that methods used to halt the aggressor are to be evaluated, pointing out that the world must not forget "how many times with the excuse of halting the unjust aggressor (.) have powerful nations taken possession of peoples and waged a war of conquest!"

A single nation can't judge how to stop an unjust aggressor, Francis noted, citing the United Nations as the right venue to discuss the issue. Pope Francis also said that while persecuted Christians are close to his heart, he mentioned the fact that there are also other minorities suffering persecution -- and they all have the same rights.

SAVE Iraqi Christians from Genocide --

Concerning the Vatican's relations with China, Pope Francis said he happened to be in the cockpit when the plane was about to enter Chinese airspace. He said he "prayed intensely for that noble and wise people."

As to his availability to travel to Kurdistan to be with the fleeing refugees, Pope Francis said he

As to his availability to travel to Kurdistan to be with the fleeing refugees, Pope Francis said he is ready to do so if it is deemed a good thing to do.


His thoughts also turned to the Jesuits and to Father Matteo Ricci, expressing his love for the Chinese people. He also referred to the letter written by Benedict XVI regarding relations with China and said this letter is still very up-to-date and it is good idea to read it again. "The Holy See," he said, "is always open to be in touch, because it has true esteem for the Chinese people."

As to his availability to travel to Kurdistan to be with the fleeing refugees, Pope Francis said he is ready to do so if it is deemed a good thing to do.

The Pope will soon shortly travel to Albania, and cited two important reasons. Albania has a government of national unity, which gathers Muslims, Orthodox and Catholics, thanks to an Inter-Religious Council that works and gives balance. This is a positive sign, he says. "The presence of the Pope is to tell all peoples that it is possible to work together!"

Issues raised during the trip included his take on the ongoing violence against Christians and other

Issues raised during the trip included his take on the ongoing violence against Christians and other minorities in Iraq and about plans for future foreign trips.


Secondly, the Pope also pointed out that Albania is unique among the communist nations in that its Constitution foresaw practical atheism.

"If you went to Mass, it was anti-constitutional" he said. He also recalled that 1,820 churches were destroyed in Albania.

The Pope fielded questions for about an hour onboard the plane following his recent visit to South K

The Pope fielded questions for about an hour onboard the plane following his recent visit to South Korea for the Sixth Asian Youth Day.


The Pope fielded questions for about an hour onboard the plane following his recent visit to South Korea for the Sixth Asian Youth Day. Issues raised during the trip included his take on the ongoing violence against Christians and other minorities in Iraq and about plans for future foreign trips.

The Pope recalled his brief meeting at Monday's Mass in Seoul with aged, so-called "comfort women" (women forced into sexual slavery by the Japanese military during World War II and who have been seeking an official apology), Pope Francis marveled that "they have not lost their dignity.

"To think that in that invasion they were hauled away as girls to the barracks to be taken advantage of," he said. The suffering of these women, martyrdom and other kinds of suffering, the Pope said, are "fruits of war . Today," he continued, "we are in a world at war - everywhere!"

---


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