As the Church in Japan holds its annual Ten Days of Prayer for Peace event, the Japanese bishops have reiterated that peace is everybody’s responsibility. Source: Vatican News.
“Peace is possible; peace is a duty”, the bishops said in the message for the prayer initiative, held annually by the Church in Japan from August 6-15, commemorating the anniversaries of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki on August 6 and 9, 1945.
In this years’ message, signed by Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Japan president and Tokyo Archbishop Isao Kikuchi, the prelates draw attention to the new threats to nuclear peace and international security, amid Russia’s war against Ukraine.
They refer to a general audience address delivered by Pope Francis on September 2, 2020, where the Pope called for “diversity and solidarity united in harmony” as the way to emerge from COVID-19 crisis in a better state than before.
“However, “ bishops note, “over the past six months what has unfolded before our eyes has not been harmony, diversity or solidarity, but confrontation, exclusion and violence”.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine shocked the world as a violent act of a major power that trampled on the growing efforts of the international community in its search for peace.
“During the pandemic we have learned from experience that supporting each other in solidarity, is the best way to protect life,” the bishops said. With the Russian invasion of Ukraine, “the world is being swept by feelings that peace can be won through violence. But that would only trample on true peace”, the bishops warn.
The Japanese bishops encourage the faithful “to reflect upon and act for peace from different angles”.
Peace is a ‘duty’ that concerns all say bishops of Japan (By Lisa Zengarini, Vatican News)