.- After praying the Angelus, the Holy Father spoke of his concern for the situation in the Middle East, "where glimmers of hope for resolving the crises that afflict the region alternate with tensions and difficulties that cause us to fear fresh violence."
In this context, he made special mention of Lebanon. There, he said quoting John Paul II's 1997 post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation, “A New Hope for Lebanon,” "yesterday as today, 'men from different cultures and religions are called to live together, to build a nation of dialogue and coexistence and to work together for the common good.' Hence, in the face of recent developments, I share the great concern expressed by the patriarch, His Beatitude Cardinal Nasrallah Pierre Sfeir, and by Maronite bishops in a communique made public last Wednesday.”
"Together with them, I ask the Lebanese and their political leaders to have as their exclusive concern the good of the country and the harmony of its communities," in order to achieve "the unity which is the responsibility of all and of each, and which requires patient and persevering efforts and a trusting and permanent dialogue.
“I also hope," the Pope concluded, "that the international community will help to find ... the peaceful and balanced solutions so necessary for Lebanon and for the entire Middle East, and I invite everyone to prayer at this difficult moment."