I know for fact that apologies and asking for forgiveness are not contagious. People will ask more and more from others and will not say let me myself recognize my sins.
I know for fact that my Church suffered also from Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, different governments and regimes, Socialist, Imperialist, Communists etc....
I know for fact that the "historic request for pardon" of the Pope is a wonderful thing, because when you ask sincerely forgiveness for sins that you did not commit or you did commit you free yourself and become nearer to Human Kind and God. And you will do your best to do better. I am sure that a lot of Catholic Bishop Conferences all over the world will follow the Pope action. But I am not sure that others will do that.
I know for fact that this MAN, POPE, one of the Most important men in the World, have given us a wonderful example of humility and love. He wants us to build a better world. We deserve to live a better life. I hope that people will lookout this historic action with love, respect and honor.
I know for fact that we are not living in a wonderful, holy WORLD. That some people will use this "historic request of pardon" to hide themselves behind and ask for more and more. They will hide their crimes, the crimes of their people and their ancestors and I would just quote from the Gospel these words (that can speak not only to Jews, but also to other Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, governments and regimes). The quote says: "Stop judging that you may not be judged. For as you judge, so will you be judged, and the measure with which you measure will be measured out to you. Why do you notice the splinter from your brother's eye, but do not perceive the wooden beam in your own eye? How can you say to your brother; Let me remove that splinter from your eye, while the wooden beam is in your eye? You hypocrite, remove the wooden beam from your eye first, then you will see clearly to remove the splinter from your brother's eye.' Gospel of Matthew 7: 1-5
I know for fact that history will remember with respect and honor the "Historic request of pardon" of the Catholic Church and will wait that others will dare to do the same.
I know for fact that our new generations and young people are not dump to know that not one people, not one regime, not one religion is INNOCENT of the blood of others and that we are all sinners and we are need for somebody to as forgiveness and somebody to forgive us. THE HERO is the one you recognizes his own weakness and ask forgiveness and we believe that God is Rahman Rahim, God is merciful to those who ask forgiveness.
I HOPE THAT OUR ARAB LEADERS WHEN THEY GO TO MECCA FOR PILGRIMAGE WOULD ASK FORGIVENESS FOR WHAT THEY HAVE DONE TO THEIR OWN ARAB PEOPLE AND CHANGE THEIR LIVES. Otherwise I do not believe in their PILGRIMAGE, PRAYERS AND HYPOCRISY.
At least the Pope when coming in Pilgrimage to the Holy land he is confessing the sins of the millennium.
I HOPE THAT THE JEWS WILL DO THE SAME WHEN THEY CELEBRATE YOM KIPPUR OF THE JUBILEE EVERY 50 YEARS. THEY NEED TO CONFESS THE DIFFERENT HOLOCAUSTS OR SHOAT IN THE WORLD, and confess that they were also active in making others to suffer and continue to suffer. THEN I WILL UNDERSTAND THAT THEIR HOLOCAUST HELPED THEM TO UNDERSTAND OTHERS AND FEEL WITH OTHERS AND NOT BURDEN THE WHOLE WORLD FOR WHAT SOME NATIONS IN EUROPE HAVE DONE TO THEM.
I Hope, yes I hope but I believe that PARDON IS NOT CONTAGIOUS, and others will stay as they are (they will not change or ask forgiveness) and the world, one day (I believe on our new generations, and youth), I pray for that, will condemn them and PRESENT THEM AS CRIMINALS.
Fr. Labib Kobti
For more about the visit of the Pope to the Holy Land, Please visit Al-Bushra.org website Al-Bushra