Today, as we celebrate the feast day of one of the Catholic victims of the Holocaust, St. Edith Stein, killed Aug. 9, 1942, in Auschwitz, we also mark the 71st anniversary of the bombing of Nagasaki.
The Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace released over the weekend a statement on the anniversary of the twin bombings in Japan, of Hiroshima on Aug. 6 and Nagasaki on Aug. 9.
Jesuit Father Michael Czerny, on behalf of the president of the council, Cardinal Peter Turkson, noted the significance of Aug. 6, the feast of the Transfiguration, and also the anniversary of the death of Paul VI, in 1978.
It was Paul VI who said at the UN: “Never again one against the other, never, never again! … Never again war, never again war!”
There is something special about this 71st anniversary of the atom bombings, said the Vatican official: “By Divine Providence, it takes place during the Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy established by Pope Francis. This Jubilee gives each and every one of us the opportunity to revisit the sinful and sorrowful moments of our lives, not in order to be crushed and to despair, but in order to allow God’s loving grace to enter with forgiveness and healing.”
May the commemoration of these anniversaries, the Jesuit prayed, “open us to the mercy with which our Heavenly Father so ardently wishes to flood our hearts. May the graces of pardon, reconciliation, solidarity and hope touch each person, each faith community and social group we encounter.”
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