“It’s a long time since the world has had such a strong spiritual leader”

Omar Abboud, the Argentinean Muslim who will accompany Francis in the Holy Land, describes the Pope’s decision to have a Jew and Muslim accompany him as “one of the strongest gestures” the world has seen

“It’s a long time since the world has had such a strong spiritual leader”, Omar Abboud, the Muslim from Buenos Aires who will accompany the Pope on his “pilgrimage of prayer” in the Holy Land, told me on the eve of the Francis’ departure for the Holy Land.

He described the Pope’s decision to invite a Jew and a Muslim to accompany him on his three-day visit to Amman, Bethlehem and Jerusalem as “one of the strongest gestures that has been seen, and it seems to me that it is on a universal scale given that he makes it in the most conflictive region of the planet”.

“He has always been a man of action, and this gesture demonstrates that. And now as Holy Father, of course, he is committed to dialogue, but it’s not up to him to resolve the conflicts, rather it is up to the political conjuncture and the international community”, he added.

“For us who come from Argentina, where there has always been integration and good coexistence between the different faiths, this is not a novelty because the impulse to inter-religious dialogue was always a constant (element of our lives)”, Abboud, the Director of the Institute for Interreligious Centre in Buenos Aires, stated.

“Argentina does not have the same baggage that exists in the Middle East, but that does not mean that our model can be exported, but it can be an inspiration to others”, he observed.

Continued at Vatican Insider
On Guard
"Spiritual Leader" ?? By whose standards?? 🤦