CAR: Archbishop Urges Country to Emulate Pope, Become Pilgrims of Peace

BANGUI DECEMBER 11, 2015 (CISA) – Archbishop Dieudonné Nzapalainga of the Catholic Archdiocese of Bangui has called on people in Central African Republic to imitate Pope Francis who during his visit called for peace and reconciliation.

“The Pope came as a pilgrim to invite us to peace. Now we must become pilgrims of peace in our own Country,” said Archbishop Nzapalainga.

Archbishop Nzapalainga further explained his gesture to walk the Muslims PK5 neighborhood, after tensions in recent days due to the exclusion of former President Francois Bozize’s candidacy in the presidential elections.

“Yesterday (December 9) I stopped the car and I went on foot to the PK5 neighborhood together with the youth, in a caravan of peace, greeting people we met along the way. We must bring down the wall of fear and mistrust,” said Archbishop Nzapalainga.

“I walked in the neighborhood as a pilgrim of peace, inviting the people to rebuild the country on the basis of reconciliation, which we can translate in terms of the Mercy that Pope Francis came to offer us”.

With regards to the Holy Father’s visit to the country, the Archbishop said that “Muslims are the first to say that ‘the Pope came, we want peace we do not want war any more’.

The Pope has profoundly marked the Muslim community. Significantly, the Muslim youth of the PK5 district have laid down their weapons to speak with their Christian brothers.”

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