Pope Francis: “I am preparing to come as a pilgrim to your wonderful countries” says in Greece and Cyprus

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With his videotaped message, o Pope Francis reported in detail on his trip to Cyprus on 2 and 3 December, and in our country, from the 4th to the 6th of December. In the first part of his message, the pope emphasizes:

“Dear brothers of Cyprus and Greece, good morning. A few days are missing, I am preparing to come as a pilgrim to your wonderful countries, which have the blessing of history, culture and the Gospel. I come with joy, in the name of the Gospel and in the footsteps of the first great missionaries. Especially the apostles Paul and Barnabas. It is nice to go back to the roots and it is important for the Church to find the joy of the Gospel again. In this mood I prepare for this pilgrimage to the springs. I ask all of you to help me prepare it, with your prayer. Meeting you I will be able to quench my thirst for the sources of brotherhood, so precious, the moment we embarked on a global synodal course. There is a synodal grace, an apostolic brotherhood, which I desire very much, with great respect. I look forward to my visit to the beloved, Blessed Archbishops Chrysostom and Jerome. “As a brother in the faith, I will be given the divine grace to welcome me and meet you in the name of the Lord and peace”, also underlines the Argentine Pope Jorge Mario Bergoglio.

Referring to the Catholics living in Greece and Cyprus, the Pope stressed that “he will bring them, with affection, the encouragement of the entire Catholic Church.”

Francis described Greece as “the homeland of classical culture” and Cyprus as “an extension of the Holy Land in Europe” and added that even today Europe cannot exist without the Mediterranean, a sea in which the Gospel was preached and great civilizations developed.

“A sea that invites us to a common voyage, and not to separate ones, with each one in a different direction, especially at this time, in which the fight against the pandemic still requires great effort and the climate crisis makes the strong consequences felt. “, added the pope. “This sea, which embraces so many peoples, with its open ports, reminds us that the sources of our coexistence are in mutual reception. “I feel your warm welcome from now on and thank those who have been preparing for this visit for a long time,” he said. coasts of our continent and elsewhere, but they do not find hospitality, but hostility, and are instrumentalized. They are our brothers. Many lost their lives at sea. “Today, Mare Nostrum, the Mediterranean, is a large cemetery.” “As a pilgrim to the sources of humanity, I will go to Lesvos again, with the conviction that the sources of our common coexistence can be tasted again, only with brotherhood and integration. “There is no other way, and with this delusion I come to see you”, said Pope Francis, and concluded:

“Dear brothers and sisters. With these feelings, I do not see the time to meet you. Everyone, not just Catholics. I ask for the blessing of the Most High for all of you, and I already bring before you your looks and expectations, your hopes and worries “.

“Always be well” said, finally, in Greek, Francis.

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