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Sunday, March 6, 2011
VATICAN: POPE: REMEMBERS MINISTER KILLED IN PAKISTAN
RADIO VATICANA REPORT: Pope remembers Shahbaz Bhatti and laments conflict in Libya
Pope Benedict during the Sunday Angelus in St Peter's Square remembered the assassinated Catholic Minister for Minorities in Pakistan Shahbaz Bhatti and appealed for the victims of fighting in Libya.
Pope Benedict on Sunday lamented the tense situation in several African and Asian countries saying, he was following events with apprehension.
In particular the Holy Father appealed for the victims of the on going fighting in Libya between rebels and forces loyal to Col Muammar Gaddafi
The Pope said “my heartfelt thoughts go out to Libya, where recent clashes have caused many deaths and a growing humanitarian crisis.”
He added, that he was offering his prayers and his closeness to all the victims and to those who find themselves in situations of anguish, and he called for aid and help for the stricken populations.
The Pope’s attention also turned Pakistan and the recent assassination of the Catholic Minister for Minorities Shahbaz Bhatti who was shot and killed for opposing harsh blasphemy laws in the country.
Pope Benedict, who had met the minister at the Vatican last year said, he hoped that Mr Bhatti’s “moving sacrifice” would “wake up consciences to find the courage to work for religious freedom and equal dignity for all in Pakistan.
The Holy Father was speaking following the Angelus on Sunday in St Peter’s Square where he also underlined the need for people to build their lives, “not on sand but on a solid basis” Referring to Sunday’s Gospel, the Pope said that “Christ is the rock of our life”. “He is the eternal and definitive Word, which makes us not fear adversity, difficulty or hardship.” Pope Benedict continued by saying that the sands of power, success and money, were not the way to find happiness or stability. “May we build up our future upon the solid foundation of the Gospel of Jesus, and find fulfilment and happiness and eternal salvation”. Before greeting pilgrims in various languages including English, the Holy Father urged people “to provide some space for the Word of God.” “It is a precious form of help”, he said, “to protect yourself against the superficial activism that can satisfy your pride for a time, but which in the end leaves you empty and unsatisfied.”