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Ukraine Independence Day, and Pope begs for peace

Pope Francis presides over World Young Day vigil with young people in Tejo Park, Lisbon

© Raquel Duarte | JMJ Lisboa 2023

I.Media - published on 08/23/23

War is cruel, says Pope Francis, calling on St. Bartholomew's intercession, as his feast day is the day of Ukraine independence.

“War is cruel — so many children missing, so many people dead,” Pope Francis once again lamented, inviting us to pray for Ukraine, at the general audience on Wednesday, August 23, 2023.

At the end of the audience in Paul VI Hall, the 86-year-old Pontiff entrusted “the beloved Ukraine, so sorely tried by war,” to the intercession of the Apostle Saint Bartholomew, whose feast day is August 24.

Leaving his notes, the Pope then turned to the crowd, whom he implored: “Let us pray for our Ukrainian brothers and sisters, they are suffering so much. Let us pray, please, let us not forget martyred Ukraine.”

The Pope also noted “a significant date” for the country, which is preparing to celebrate its independence day (1991) on August 24.

In greeting the Polish-speaking pilgrims present at the audience, the Pope also paid tribute to the “love of neighbor” shown by neighboring Poles towards “the Ukrainian population suffering from war.”

Pope FrancisUkraine
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