At a time when “globalization” is becoming an increasingly prevalent adjective to define the progression of our world, society seems to have become a series of social dichotomies.
Distance is measured in megabits rather than miles.
Technology allows us to be closer than ever, while our ideas and ideals push us farther apart.
This might seem like a downfall of modern society, yet the conflicts we face today have existed as long as society itself. We fight about politics, religion, football teams, music styles, food choices, clothing trends—everything and anything that can be argued, is, always was and always will be.
The only thing we have in common, it seems, is that we all have opinions.
But underneath these opinions lies our basic humanness. The essence of who we are and what we are.
This similarity is easy to overlook in the face of a debate, a vote or the demands of daily life. Yet our essential humanness, the human spirit, is a powerful force; it lives within us, drives us and will not be silenced. It can bind people together everywhere, and might just be the secret to peace.
Pope Francis compares the human spirit to a rallying call, “rising up from humanity and the very bowels of the earth itself, a cry that needs to be heard by the international community.”
The office of the pope is one of the most ancient and powerful world leadership positions. Pope Francis seems to represent the best of the most ancient religious traditions combined with an unexpectedly modern approach to his practice. He carries out his sacred office with a humble conviction to spread the most universal and fundamental of beliefs.
Since his coronation, Pope Francis has become somewhat of a celebrity, traveling the world and spreading messages, not of fire and brimstone—nor finger pointing or even Catholic doctrine—but simply of love.
In the aftermath of countless heart-wrenching tragedies against mankind, Pope Francis reminds us all of how essential it is to focus on the shared experiences of people everywhere and, “How important it is that we be seen as prophets of peace, peacemakers who invite others to live in peace, harmony and mutual respect!”
In his recent visit to Africa, amongst people divided over issues of all kinds, Francis spoke to the Kenyan people, but his words were for all of us. He proclaimed:
“In an increasingly interdependent world, we see ever more clearly the need for inter-religious understanding, friendship and collaboration in defending the God-given dignity of individuals and peoples, and their right to live in freedom and happiness.”
Sometimes we just need a reminder of what’s truly important, of what we all share in a world full of differences and indifference.
Pope Francis holds the unique position of being not a leader of a country, not a president or king, but a champion of people everywhere. His words to Kenya were a reminder of the human spirit that unites us all, no matter where we are from or what we believe, and carried with them a message of hope and love for all people to hear.
Author: Gabriella Sweezey
Editor: Toby Israel
Photo: Wikipedia/Agência Brasil