The first theme of the first chapter discusses “Shattered Dreams.” What does Pope Francis mean by this? Perhaps that human beings had hope that after a century of wars, cold and hot, we were starting to come together in some form of cooperation. Perhaps it was all a pipe dream. Europe, after all, the stage for the bloodiest of human dramas, was showing signs of hope.
10. For decades, it seemed that the world had learned a lesson from its many wars and disasters, and was slowly moving towards various forms of integration. For example, there was the dream of a united Europe, capable of acknowledging its shared roots and rejoicing in its rich diversity. We think of “the firm conviction of the founders of the European Union, who envisioned a future based on the capacity to work together in bridging divisions and in fostering peace and fellowship between all the peoples of this continent”. [Address to the European Parliament, Strasbourg (25 November 2014): AAS 106 (2014), 996]
The Holy Father’s home continent, racked by colonialism and corruption for centuries, was turning a corner, it seemed:
There was also a growing desire for integration in Latin America, and several steps were taken in this direction. In some countries and regions, attempts at reconciliation and rapprochement proved fruitful, while others showed great promise.
The aspiration for unity is godly and productive. I observe the naysayers to international cooperation, and I can’t help but think those who want to drive wedges between ethnic groups, political entities, across borders and within them, are literally of the demonic.
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