Pope, thousands brave rain to mark Christ’s resurrection
IN an Easter peace wish, Pope Francis yesterday praised the framework nuclear agreement with Iran as an opportunity to make the world safer, while expressing deep worry about bloodshed in Libya, Yemen, Syria, Iraq, Nigeria and elsewhere in Africa.
Cautious hope ran through Francis’ “Urbi et Orbi” Easter message, a kind of papal commentary on the state of the world’s affairs, which he delivered from the central balcony of St. Peter’s Square.
He had just celebrated Mass in rain-whipped St. Peter’s Square for tens of thousands of people, who huddled under umbrellas or braved the downpour in thin, plastic rain-slickers, according to AP.
Easter day is “so beautiful, and so ugly because of the rain,” Francis said after Mass about Christianity’s most important feast day. He expressed thanks for the flowers, which bedecked the square and which were donated by the Netherlands, but the bright hues of the azaleas and other blossoms seemed muted by the gray skies.
Francis made his first public comments about the recent framework for an accord, reached in Lausanne, Switzerland, and aimed at ensuring Iran doesn’t develop a nuclear weapon.
“In hope we entrust to the merciful Lord the framework recently agreed to in Lausanne, that it may be a definitive step toward a more secure and fraternal world.”
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