|Pope Francis waves to the crowd in St. Peter's Square on Easter Sunday.|
Pope Francis celebrated Easter mass with members of the faithful who stood in the rain to see the pontiff. In his Easter message, he urged peace in countries around the world and specifically mentioned Syria and Iraq, along with the Holy Land, Ukraine, Libya, Yemen, Nigeria, Sudan, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
To the crowd in St. Peter’s Square he said, "We ask Jesus, the victor over death, to lighten the sufferings of our many brothers and sisters who are persecuted for his name, and of all those who suffer injustice as a result of ongoing conflicts and violence. We ask for peace, above all, for Syria and Iraq, that the roar of arms may cease and that peaceful relations may be restored among the various groups, which make up those beloved countries. May the international community not stand by before the immense humanitarian tragedy unfolding in these countries and the drama of the numerous refugees.”
The pope gave the traditional Urbi et Orbi from the central balcony of St. Peter’s Square. These remarks come after those that he gave on Good Friday, in which he criticized the international community for its “complicit silence” regarding the persecution of Christians.
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