Pope Francis has urged forgiveness as he presided over a Mass before an estimated one million people in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Million attend Pope’s Mass in DR Congo
Pope Francis has offered a prayer for an end to violence on the African continent during a Mass in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s capital Kinshasa attended by more than one million people.
“Brothers and sisters, peace be with you,” the pontiff said in the local language before urging a crowd that gathered since dawn at the N’Dolo military airport to “co-operate with everyone, to break the cycle of violence, to dismantle the machinations of hatred”.
Pope Francis arrived the previous day on a six-day trip to DR Congo and South Sudan, during which he plans to promote peace and charity after decades of bloodshed in both countries.
“May it be a good time for all of you in this country who call yourselves Christians but engage in violence (to accept forgiveness). The Lord is telling you: ‘Lay down your arms, embrace mercy’,” the 86-year-old Church leader said.