How we react to the Pope Francis’s way of addressing the situation in Israel and Gaza has the potential to not only bring Jews closer to an important group of people but it also provides an important opportunity to those of us that support Israel and want peace in the region. As I have made quite clear in many of my posts, my support for this war and the Israeli government is unwavering. However, by no mean does that mean I’m happy about the events taking place.
Like so many others standing with Israel I am heartbroken and frightened by the actions of evil people, not only with what they are doing, but with what they are causing to happen. I know Hamas is responsible for the ongoing tragedy in Gaza and I truly believe they must be stopped at all costs. But I also don’t require those saddened by the situation to take a side, as long as their assessment is fair, balanced and without bias. So when Pope Francis puts his emphasis into praying to God that the violence stops, and pleading openly that the fighting and killing stops, it is my opinion that he is using his platform appropriately. The tendency of some might lean towards being critical of him for not taking a political stand, but I personally do not feel that way. I believe we should not only support his stance, but encourage it as well. A call for peace by a religious leader is a good thing, and besides being something we need more of, commending his position is the right thing to do from a Public Relations standpoint, something we can not ignore.
Don’t misinterpret my appreciation for the Pope’s position with a shift towards moderation. The enemies this world is facing are barbaric in ways not seen since the Nazis in Europe and like the Nazis they will only be destroyed by force. That being said the battle takes place on many fronts, and when the Pope prays and pleads for peace, he is doing the right thing and fighting it on his front. If we recognize this we will be just as strong without getting dangerously desensitized. A Pope urging people not to fight is a Pope using his influence for the right purpose.
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