The patriarch’s words resounded during the homily of the Mass held in the Basilica of the Holy Sepulcher, where tradition says Christ rose from the dead.
“I pray that God will grant us better times; times free of blood and hatred, full of justice, peace and security; times in which all of us together, in this Holy Land, will be united by the same vision of God, who fills our hearts with peace and forgiveness,” he said.
The patriarch addressed a message to Palestinian and Israeli leaders, appealing for justice and the pursuit of ways of peace, and condemning terrorism and oppression.
Today, Orthodox Christians were beginning their Holy Week, celebrating Palm Sunday. Their Easter is next Sunday.