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Pope Francis' video message to Chile, Peru ahead of Apostolic Visit

Pope Francis sends this video message to the people of Chile and Peru ahead of his Apostolic Visit to the countries on 15-22 January. This is the full text of the message.

Brothers and sisters of Chile and Peru:

As my journey to your countries draws near, I greet you with affection. I will visit you as a pilgrim of the joy of the Gospel, to share "the peace of the Lord" with all and "to confirm you in the same hope". Peace and hope, shared among all.

I want to meet you, to look into your eyes, see your faces and be able to experience the closeness of God among all of you, His tenderness and mercy that embraces and comforts us.

I know the history of your countries, shaped with perseverance and tenacity. I wish to thank God together with you, for the faith and love you have for Him and for your brothers and sisters in need – especially the love you demonstrate towards those who are discarded by society. The culture of waste dominates us more and more. I want to share your joys, sorrows, difficulties and hopes. I want to tell you that you are not alone, that the Pope is with you, that the whole Church embraces you, that the Church sees you.

With you I want to experience the peace that comes from God, and that we need; only He can give it to us. It is the gift that Christ gives to everyone, it is the basis of our coexistence and of society. Peace is founded on justice and allows us to find opportunities to share communion and harmony. We must constantly ask the Lord for this peace and He will give it to us. It is the peace of the Risen Lord who brings joy and urges us to be missionaries, reviving the gift of faith that leads to encounter, to the shared communion of the same faith that we celebrate and spread.

This encounter with the risen Christ confirms us in hope. We do not want to be attached to the things of this world. Our gaze goes much further, our eyes look to His mercy that heals our suffering. Only He inspires us to get up and keep going. Feeling this closeness of God makes us a living community that can be moved by those who are with us and take concrete steps of friendship and fraternity. We are brothers and sisters who come out to meet others to confirm one another in the same faith and hope.

I place this Apostolic Journey and all the intentions we bring in our hearts, in the hands of the Blessed Virgin, Mother of America, so that she, like a good Mother, may embrace them and teach us the way to her Son.

See you soon! And please do not forget to pray for me. 

09 January 2018, 15:00