Peace is at the heart of Pope Francis message. Peace; a word that seems so simple and yet so complex, and even more difficult to attain.
The Hebrew word for Peace is "Shalom", which literally means "to be complete or whole" when used as a greeting as we do in mass. When we say "Peace be to you", we are wishing all good things to the person we are greeting. We are not just wishing them good health, or a solution to their financial problem, or the ability to pass their exam, but we are wishing them all of this and more. This is a wish or prayer that we would want for everyone and especially for ourselves.
And yet, this peace, this Shalom, this completeness and wholeness is still far from our reach. With the recent events, there is a greater need for all to unite in prayer especially for all our brothers and sisters who are experiencing the consequences of war. The evil one will not rest and this is evident in the terrorist acts in the United Kingdom, the civil war in Syria, and even in our own shores as the military tries to regain control of the areas overtaken by extremist groups in Marawi.
Through all of this, many innocent lives have been taken and still, many have been slowly dying from poverty, malnutrition and hunger.
What can we do? We are mere citizens and not world leaders. It is beyond our powers to stop the arms trade or to stop the infiltration of terrorists or to even stop the squabbles and fights within our own communities. But we should not lose hope. We can do more than we think we can. We have the power within ourselves and with the Holy Spirit, we will be empowered even more. Let us not lose hope; let us not forget the power of our God who has already won the victory over death and sin. In this light, let us do our share In our own way to come in the presence of our God and pray that we may find peace; peace in our hearts, in our homes, in our families, in our schools, in our workplaces, in our church; in our community, in our country and in the world.