POPE CONDEMNS HATE AND VIOLENCE IN THE NAME OF GOD AND RELIGION
"To hate no man."
St Benedict, Rule No 4
"No religion is from God which contradicts our sense of right and wrong"
NAPLES, Italy, OCT. 21, 2007 (Compiled from various news sources): Pope Benedict XVI urged the world's religious leaders not to allow God's name to be used to justify violence.
"Faced with a world lacerated by conflicts," the Holy Father said, "where at times violence is justified in the name of God, it is important to re-emphasize that religion can never be a vehicle of hate; never, in the name of God, can we justify evil and violence."
"On the contrary," he added, "because they speak of peace to the human heart, religions can offer precious resources for building a peaceful humanity."
"In 2002, after the dramatic events of Sept. 11 of the previous year, the same John Paul II again called religious leaders to Assisi to ask God to stop the grave threats to humanity that were looming, especially because of terrorism.
"In respect of the differences of the various religions, we are all called to work for peace and to an active commitment to promote reconciliation between peoples. It is this authentic 'spirit of Assisi' which is opposed to every form of violence and abuse of religion as a pretext for violence."
The pope's statements coincided with a three-day meeting of religious leaders from around the world on the role of religion and culture in creating a violence-free world.
In attendance were Orthodox Patriarch Bartholomew I, the Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, Israel's chief rabbi Yona Metzger and the imam of the United Arab Emirates, Ibrahim Ezzeddin.