Monday, February 06, 2006

Vatican Response to Violence Sparked by Cartoon

For a background on this issue, read here.

"Coexistence Calls for a Climate of Mutual Respect"

VATICAN CITY, FEB. 5, 2006 ( Here is a translation of the issued Saturday by the Vatican press office on reactions to the publication in several Western newspapers of caricatures of the prophet Mohammed.

In response to several requests on the Holy See's position vis-à-vis recent offensive representations of the religious sentiments of individuals and entire communities, the Vatican press office can state:

1. The right to freedom of thought and expression, sanctioned by the Declaration of the Rights of Man, cannot imply the right to offend the religious sentiment of believers. This principle applies obviously for any religion.

2. In addition, coexistence calls for a climate of mutual respect to favor peace among men and nations. Moreover, these forms of exasperated criticism or derision of others manifest a lack of human sensitivity and may constitute in some cases an inadmissible provocation. A reading of history shows that wounds that exist in the life of peoples are not cured this way.

3. However, it must be said immediately that the offenses caused by an individual or an organ of the press cannot be imputed to the public institutions of the corresponding country, whose authorities might and should intervene eventually according to the principles of national legislation. Therefore, violent actions of protest are equally deplorable. Reaction in the face of offense cannot fail the true spirit of all religion. Real or verbal intolerance, no matter where it comes from, as action or reaction, is always a serious threat to peace.

by Pope John Paul II

O God, Creator of the universe, who extends your paternal concern over every creature and guides the events of history to the goal of salvation, we acknowledge your fatherly love when you break the resistance of mankind and, in a world torn by strife and discord, you make us ready for reconciliation.

Renew for us the wonders of your mercy: send forth your Spirit that He may work in the intimacy of hearts, that enemies may begin to dialogue, that adversaries may shake hands and peoples may encounter one another in harmony. May all commit themselves to the sincere search for true peace which will extinguish all arguments, for charity which overcomes hatred, for pardon which disarms revenge.



Blogger Carmel said...

Isn't it terrible? I was shocked and found out rather recently actually.
The cartoons were a bad idea because they caused offense, the violence is a bad idea and it's a big mess.
I pray it sort out very soon. The vatican's response was great.
Thank you for the beautiful prayer of peace.

9:47 PM  
Blogger Saint Peter's helpers said...

I love John Paul's prayer for peace. I pray it all the time and is so very needed in today's world. Thank you for praying with us!

God bless you Carmel.

11:56 PM  

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