The pope calls for Assisi summit for better understanding, peace

On Saturday, The Washington Post reported that the Vatican was worried that one of the pope's dearest projects, the promotion of understanding between Muslims and Christians, was falling by the wayside because of current tensions. The article pointed out that so far, "the Vatican has kept an unusually low profile regarding the war."

That changed Sunday. Speaking at St. Peter's Square, Pope John Paul II called for leaders of all the world's religions to gather on January 24 in Assisi, Italy, to pray for peace. His hopes for the summit are both to overcome the armed conflict and improve relations between Christians and Muslims.

"At this historic moment, humanity needs to see gestures of peace and listen to words of hope," The Pope said. "The more insurmountable the difficulties seem, the darker the prospects, so much more intense should our prayer to God become to implore him for the gift of mutual understanding, of concord and peace."

Assisi is the birthplace of St. Francis, the founder of the Roman Catholic Franciscan order. The pope has twice held peace summits at Assisi.

Shelter Now Workers reveal kindness and atrocities in Afghanistan
The eight released foreign aid workers, which include Americans Dayna Curry and Heather Mercer, have begun to discuss their captivity and rescue last week from Afghanistan.

The two Americans, four Germans, and two Australians—along with 16 Afghans—were held for over three months by the Taliban on charges of preaching Christianity.

Curry and Mercer have admitted a few of the charges were true. They admit to being in an Afghan home, giving the family a book on Jesus, and watching parts of a Jesus film with them. But, they said, their ...

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