‘In the face of war, God demands peace’ says Archbishop John

Archbishop John Wilson called for each of us to continue praying for peace in the Holy Land

At the Investiture Mass for the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem at St George’s Cathedral, Archbishop John Wilson called once again for peace in the Holy Land.

In his homily, Archbishop John said that in the “face of war, God demands peace”. The Archbishop of Southwark powerfully made the point that:

“Violence must be cast down and reconciliation raised up. Hatred must be sent away and friendship rekindled. Vengeance must be dismantled and hope restored. We cannot make idols of power or weapons.”

The Archbishop drew on his recent meeting with Father Gabriel Romanelli, the parish priest of the Holy Family in Gaza. When the Archbishop met with Fr Gabriel, he was told about the catastrophic loss of life, destruction of homes, as well as the lack of food, water, medicine and healthcare.

Archbishop John said the “specific mission to support the Church of the Latin Patriarchate is vital”, adding that we all must “pray for a just, peaceful and lasting resolution” while we “do what we can to help alleviate suffering.”

Pope Francis, has consistently kept close to the people of the Holy Land. Archbishop John explained that the Holy Father regularly speaks with Father Gabriel and his assistant priest. This closeness, Archbishop John said, is an example for us all. The Archbishop said:

“We, each of us, and together, we have a part to play in demonstrating our closeness. Spiritually and practically. We must keep on praying for peace in the Holy Land and in Ukraine.”

In his homily, Archbishop John also drew on Our Lady’s Magnificat. Mary’s “exultant Song of Praise”, the Archbishop said, “is more than a pleasant hymn. Her Magnificat is an anthem of justice and a rallying cry to mercy”.

Archbishop John added that we should continue to seek to maternal intercession of Our Lady Queen of Palestine, “that she cast a pitying glance over the homeland of her Son and over every country suffering war”.

As Archbishop John said, together with Our Lady, the Saints, with Father Gabriel and with the entire Church “lets sing The Magnificat of justice and mercy”.

You can read the Archbishop’s Homily in full below, as well as find photos from the Mass.