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Pope calls for effort to defend persecuted Christians

Condemns anti-Semitism in audience with Simon Wiesenthal Center

24 October, 14:48
Pope calls for effort to defend persecuted Christians (ANSA) - Vatican City, October 24 - Pope Francis on Thursday called for a combined effort to protect persecuted Christians worldwide in an audience with global Jewish human rights organization the Simon Wiesenthal Center.

''I think with special pain about the suffering, marginalization and authentic persecutions which far from few Christians are suffering in several countries worldwide'', the pontiff said.

''Let's join forces to sponsor a culture of togetherness, respect, understanding and reciprocal forgiveness'', he told representatives of the Los Angeles-based group.

''I have stressed several times in the past few weeks the Church's censure of any form of anti-Semitism', the pontiff also said.

All forms of intolerance must be confronted, the pope noted, as ''wherever any minority is persecuted and marginalized because of its religious or ethnic convictions, all of society's goodness is in danger and we must all feel involved''.

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