Vatican City, May 26, 2021 / 12:00 pm
The Vatican said Wednesday that it hopes the coronavirus pandemic will “further unite” Catholics and Buddhists in service of the suffering.
In its annual message for the Buddhist feast of Vesakh, issued May 26, the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue said that the virus challenged followers of all religions to find new ways of serving humanity together.
“May this dramatic situation of the COVID-19 pandemic strengthen our bonds of friendship and further unite us in service to the human family, adopting ‘a culture of dialogue as the path, mutual cooperation as the code of conduct; reciprocal understanding as the method and standard,’” the pontifical council said, quoting from Pope Francis’ latest encyclical, “Fratelli tutti.”
The Vatican has sent annual messages to Buddhists for more than 25 years on the feast of Vesakh, which commemorates the birth, enlightenment, and death of Buddha.