“In the deluge of news that overwhelms us, do I, as Jesus shows us today, know how to stop myself before the great things that God accomplishes? Do I allow myself to marvel like a child at the good that silently changes the world? And do I thank the Father each day for his works? May Mary, who exulted in the Lord, make us able to be amazed by his love and to thank him with simplicity.”
After praying the Angelus, the pope announced that he will create 21 new cardinals in a consistory on Sept. 30.
He also noted the new flare-up of violence in the Holy Land. He expressed his hopes that Palestinian and Israeli leaders would commit themselves to dialogue so that “we can put an end to the spiral of violence and open paths of reconciliation and peace.”
Patriarch Pierbattista Pizzaballa, the Latin patriarch of Jerusalem who is among those the pope has just named cardinal, on July 4 condemned the Israeli government’s air and ground attacks on the Jenin refugee camp in the Palestinian West Bank after two unknown assailants launched rockets toward Israel from Lebanon.
In a statement on Twitter, the patriarch said: “The city of Jenin has been subject to unprecedented Israeli aggression, which also caused a lot of damage to our Latin parish in Jenin.”
“We condemn this violence, demand a cease-fire, and hope for the pursuit of peace and dialogue to prevent other future unjustified attacks on the population,” he said.
Pope Francis also noted that today is Sea Sunday. In addition to thanking the various people who work in ports and on the seas, he noted the many volunteers who dedicate themselves to cleaning the oceans. The pope spoke of recent news about the amount of plastic that is found in the water and praised those who are working to combat this issue.
In the same context, he thanked those who work to help the many migrants who try to find better lives by crossing the Mediterranean Sea. He has referred to this body of water as “Europe’s largest cemetery.”
Nearly 50 people were saved just last Friday off the coast of Libya. The International Organization for Migration has reported that the first quarter of 2023 was the deadliest first quarter since 2017, with 441 migrant deaths in the Central Mediterranean. In fact, according to that U.N. group, nearly 2,000 have already died this year. Part of that large number is due to one of the worst tragedies to ever occur: when the Adriana sank last month off the coast of Greece. The IOM estimates the number who died at 596.