Vatican City, Feb 3, 2017 / 03:27 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- On behalf of Pope Francis, the Vatican's Secretary of State sent a message encouraging the participants of XVI World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates to peaceful and effective communication. “As the participants reflect on the many challenges to peace in the modern world, His Holiness encourages them in their efforts to promote understanding and dialogue among peoples,” said Cardinal Pietro Parolin, with greetings from the Pope.
The XVI World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates is being hosted Feb. 2-5 by Bogotá Columbia's Chamber of Commerce. The Summit gathers noble peace laureates, political leaders, organizations, as well as students and professors to share experiences and ideas for building a better platform of peace. About 20 laureates and several world leaders will be attending. After the conference, Bogotá will be designated as the City of Peace, and humanitarian and peace projects will be initiated by the organization and the participants.
Cardinal Parolin said that the Pope trusts “the efforts in Colombia to build bridges of peace and reconciliation can inspire all communities to rise above animosity and division,” addressing the recent resolution to Columbia's conflict. Bogotá had been in an over 50 year conflict, which ended in 2016. President Juan Manuel Santos was awarded the Noble Peace Prize for helping resolve the violence between the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Columbia or FARC. Cease fire began in June 2016, and a revised peace deal was signed by both parties and approved by congress in November.
Pope Francis specifically mentioned the power of non-violence during oppression and maltreatment. He said, “When victims of violence are able to resist the temptation to retaliate, they become the most credible promoters of nonviolent peacemaking.” The letter ended with the Holy Father's promise to pray for divine wisdom and strength for all participants.