Vatican City, Jan 10, 2021 / 05:30 am
Pope Francis prayed Sunday for the United States, asking the Immaculate Virgin Mary to help foster a "culture of encounter" after the recent violence at the U.S. Capitol Building.
"I extend an affectionate greeting to the people of the United States of America, shaken by the recent siege of Congress. I pray for those who lost their lives, five lost in those dramatic moments," Pope Francis said after his Angelus address Jan. 10.
"I reaffirm that violence is always self-destructive. Nothing is gained with violence and so much is lost. I urge the authority of the state and the entire population to maintain a high sense of responsibility in order to calm the spirits, promote national reconciliation and protect the democratic values rooted in American society," the pope said.
In the midday Marian prayer broadcast live from the library of the Vatican's Apostolic Palace, Pope Francis invoked the intercession of the Immaculate Conception, who was proclaimed patroness of the United States in 1846.