Three days after the events in Paris and less than ten before the programmed journey to Africa, which will include Kenya, Uganda and Central Africa, the country which is most at risk, chosen by Bergoglio to open the Jubilee, Father Lombardi states that “Pope Francis wants to speak about mercy and love of God also to the African peoples and to those who suffer the most. This is how was born the idea to start the Jubilee in Africa, besides opening it in Rome. It is an advance for a continent that is sorely in need. All the stops of the journey in Africa have been confirmed”. “The journey to Africa – reminds father Lombardi – was wanted very much by the Pope to bring testimony of the love of God and his message on a continent much loved by the Church but who live problems, conflicts, hatred and violence.”
Just in the battered capital of Central Africa, Bangui, the Pope wants to open on November 29 the first Holy Door anticipating thus the Jubilee in Africa, and around the world, including the Vatican City, where it will start on December 8. The Vatican, however, does not lack realism and from the beginning of programming this journey, the first one on the African continent, the stop in Central Africa was placed at the bottom of the list (so it would be possible to change plans last minute without cancelling the entire journey). If the events in Paris make heavier the terrorism alert everywhere these days, the country in question has been plagued for a long time by a fierce civil war and the Pope himself, In the Angelus on November1, while mentioning the stop in Bangui used the word “to hope”.
The Vatican confirms the Jubilee and Parolin addressed the Islamic world directly: “Merciful? – Said the Secretary of State, referring precisely to the Jubilee of Mercy – is also the name of the most ‘beautiful names of God for Muslims, who may be involved in this Holy Year, according to the Pope’s wish. ” Of course, “it is normal”, Parolin continues, that security will be potentiated. “Today we all feel threatened, so it is logical that also as far as the Vatican is concerned, especially in view of this event which will see a multitude of people gather in Rome, there will be more attention”. “We are aware of the threats but preparation for the Jubilee continues. There are no decisions that disrupt” the Holy Year. “Thanks to strengthening security measures, we hope everything will be fine”. Then Parolin confirmed that in order to fight terrorism weapons can be used.