Pope Francis pays tribute to Christians persecuted by ISIS during Palm Sunday mass

Pope Francis celebrates Palm Sunday, the beginning of Holy Week leading up to Easter, and pays tribute to today's martyrs while thousands wave palm and olive branches in St. Peter's Square.

By REUTERS
March 29, 2015 17:35
1 minute read.
Easter

Pope Francis leads the Palm Sunday mass at Saint Peter's Square at the Vatican. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user uxperience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew, Ivrit
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Repor
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

Pope Francis led the world's Roman Catholics in Palm Sunday celebrations by paying tribute to those killed for their faith, a reference to the victims of Islamic State militants.

Francis, who earlier this month began the third year of his papacy, presided at a colourful procession in St. Peter's Square commemorating the day the Bible says people of Jerusalem welcomed Jesus days before he was crucified.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


Thousands of people, including the 78-year-old Argentine pope and prelates dressed in red vestments, carried palm fronds and branches in St. Peter's Square on the day that marks the start of Holy Week, which ends on Easter Sunday.

In his homily during the Mass that followed, Francis, who last month denounced the killing of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians by Islamic State militants in Libya, paid tribute to those he said were being killed for their faith today.

"We think too of the humiliation endured by all those who, for their lives of fidelity to the Gospel, encounter discrimination and pay a personal price," he said, speaking in Italian.

"We think too of our brothers and sisters who are persecuted because they are Christians, the martyrs of our own time. There are many of them. They refuse to deny Jesus and they endure insult and injury with dignity," he said.

Francis has at times expressed alarm over the rise of Islamic State militants and the plight of Christians in the Middle East.



He has said that the international community would be justified in using military force as a last resort to stop "unjust aggression" but that it should not be up to a single nation to decide how to intervene in the conflict.

The coming week is one of the busiest in the liturgical calendar for the leader of the world's 1.2 billion Roman Catholics.

On Holy Thursday, he presides at two services, including one at a Rome prison where he will wash and kiss the feet of male and female inmates to commemorate Christ's gesture of humility towards his apostles on the night before he died.

Francis is the first pope to hold the foot-washing service outside a church and to include women and Muslims, which has upset conservative Catholics.

He presides at two Good Friday services, including a Via Crucis (Way of the Cross) procession around the Colosseum.
sign up to our newsletter

Related Content

May 22, 2018
1100 Christian Zionist leaders celebrate Israel’s 70th in Dallas

By JERUSALEM POST STAFF