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Francis gives Iraq - and the world - the message it needs most: leave violence behind you and focus on building a culture of peace and freedom for all, including religions
Repeating a phrase he used in a video message to the Iraqi people on the eve of his visit, Pope Francis told the civic authorities, "I come as a penitent, asking forgiveness of heaven and my brothers and sisters for so much destruction and cruelty ..."
Government officials and members of the South Sudan Opposition Movements Alliance signed a new peace agreement in Rome in January, giving rise to hope that an end to the fighting might be near.
In the Gospel of a recent weekday Mass Jesus said he had come not to bring peace but a sword, and to set parents...