CWN - Following his October 23 Sunday Angelus address, Pope Francis issued a new appeal for peace in Iraq.

“In these dramatic hours, I am close to the entire population of Iraq, and in particular those of the city of Mosul,” Pope Francis said to the crowds gathered in St. Peter’s Square.

“Our hearts are shocked by the heinous acts of violence that for too long are being committed against innocent citizens, be they Muslims, Christians or members of other ethnic and religious groups,” he continued. “I am saddened to hear of the killing in cold blood of so many sons and daughters of that beloved land, including many children.”

The Pope added: "This cruelty makes us weep, and leaves us speechless. My word of solidarity is accompanied by the assurance of my remembrance in prayer so that Iraq, although suffering, may remain strong and steadfast in the hope of being able to proceed towards a future of safety, reconciliation and peace. For this, I ask you to unite with me in silent prayer."


Teachings of Christ

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God." (John 3:16-18 ESV)

Lenten Prayer of St. Ephrem

O Lord and Master of my life, drive away from me the spirit of despondency, carelessness, love of power, and idle chatter. (Prostration)

Rather grant to me, Your servant, the spirit of wholeness of being, humility, patience, and love. (Prostration)

Yes, O Lord and King, grant that I may see my own faults and not condemn my brother; for You are blessed to the ages of ages. Amen. (Prostration)

Random Proverb

"My son, do not despise the Lord's discipline or be weary of his reproof, for the Lord reproves him whom he loves, as a father the son in whom he delights." (Proverbs 3:11,12 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

No one on this earth can avoid affliction; and although the afflictions which the Lord sends are not great men imagine them beyond their strength and are crushed by them. This is because they will not humble their souls and commit themselves to the will of God. But the Lord Himself guides with His grace those who are given over to God's will, and they bear all things with fortitude for the sake of God Whom they have so loved and with Whom they are glorified for ever. It is impossible to escape tribulation in this world but the man who is giver over to the will of God bears tribulation easily, seeing it but putting his trust in the Lord, and so his tribulations pass.

Archimandrite Sophrony