Catholic pope calls for mutual respect in letter to Muslims

Aug. 2, 2013 at 5:32 PM
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VATICAN CITY, Aug. 2 (UPI) -- Pope Francis, in a personal message to Muslims as they prepared to end the holy month of Ramadan, called for mutual respect among religions.

While it is traditional, since 1967, for the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue to send a message of good wishes at the end of the observance, the spiritual leader of the world's Roman Catholics wrote this message himself, the first time since 1991 when Pope John Paul II did so, the Italian news agency ANSA reported.

"Regarding the education of Muslim and Christian youth, we have to bring up our young people to think and speak respectfully of other religions and their followers, and to avoid ridiculing and denigrating their convictions and practices," Francis wrote.

He returned this week from a trip to Brazil for World Youth Day observances.

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