Pope Paul the Sixth appealed again today (Sunday) for a peaceful and honourable conclusion to the war in the Middle East.
Pope Paul the Sixth appealed again today (Sunday) for a peaceful and honourable conclusion to the war in the Middle East. The Pope was addressing a large congregation assembled in St. Peter's Square, Vatican City, during a service of thanksgiving and worship.
During the course of the six-day Middle East war, Pope Paul has made repeated pleas for peace between the Arabs and the Israelis.
His earliest concern was that the Holy City of Jerusalem should be declared an 'open and inviolable city' should the Middle East fighting worsen. These wishes were not in fact carried out, and heavy fighting between Israeli and Jordanian forces of the city by the Israelis seems to have protected Jerusalem from extensive damage.
Catholic organisations throughout the Christian world have offered prayers and physical aid to both sides involved in the Middle East fighting. The Catholic Welfare Organisation 'Caritas Internationalis' appealed on Tuesday for money for blood plasma, medicines and bandages for those wounded in the conflict.
Pope Paul has given a personal donation of GBP9,000 sterling (25,000 U.S. dollars) for medical aid to the injured. The Vatican announced that a planeload of supplies flew to the Middle East last Thursday.
Pilgrims flocked to Naples Cathedral on Friday night as word spread that a relic said to be the blood of Saint Januarius had miraculously liquefied during a thanksgiving service for peace in the Middle East. The relic has been on exhibit now for several days.