Vatican City (Agenzia Fides) - The Pope prays and hopes that the Beijing Olympics "will bring about a more fraternal world": this is what he said at the end of the General Audience held today in St. Peter's Square.
These are the words of Pope Francis: "The Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games are about to open in Beijing, on 4 February and 4 March respectively. I warmly greet all participants. I wish the organizers every success and the athletes the very best. Sport, with its universal language, can build bridges of friendship and solidarity between individuals and peoples of all cultures and religions. I therefore appreciate the fact that to the historic Olympic motto “Citius, Altius, Fortius” — that is, “faster, higher, stronger” — the International Olympic Committee has added the word “communiter”, that is, “together”: so that the Olympic Games may bring about a more fraternal world" .
The Pope then addressed "a special thought" and embrace to the whole Paralympic world: "We will win the most important medal together, if the example of athletes with disabilities helps everyone to overcome prejudices and fears and to make our communities more welcoming and inclusive.
This is the real gold medal. I also follow with attention and emotion the personal stories of refugee athletes. May their testimonies help to encourage civil societies to open up with ever greater confidence to all, leaving no one behind. I wish the great Olympic and Paralympic family a unique experience of human brotherhood and peace: blessed are the peacemakers! (Mt 5.9)".
The Pope's wishes were welcomed with favor, with devotion and with gratitude by Chinese Catholics. (NZ) (Agenzia Fides, 2/2/2022)