The Bible is the Word of God. If politicians and fundamentalist believers abuse it as a weapon in battle, it does not mean that the Word of God has ceased to be God’s Word. The value and truth of Sacred Scripture depend on the authority of God Himself, and not on those who use it or abuse it, be they friends or enemies.
The Word of God should be above every human conflict. It cannot foster a conflict between peoples or individuals. On the contrary, the message of salvation is to be found in it, even in our present situation of conflict. In it must be seen the one and only God, who commands all believers despite their different religions to practice justice, love, forgiveness, and reconciliation.
It is time to return to the depths of religious truth, and free the religion from the social confines that are stifling it. When religion is set free in this way, it will be a force for liberation; but subject to social or political constraints, it loses all its liberating power, and becomes an instrument of struggle and hostility.
Religion should help us to correct ourselves, to free us in order to be able to dialogue with others, and to share with others in a common action of reconciliation and construction.
Jerusalem was and remains the Mother Church, the birthplace of the first Christian community. Jerusalem, as a symbol of the Land itself, is called holy, not only because specific sites confirm the Bible stories and inspire faith, but also because the city and the land have experienced the divine touching the human in the midst of sinfulness.
The holy city and this holy land are…ours. This place is our home. We live upon it and bury our dead beneath it. Today, we are suffering for the simple fact of being here.
Here in the land of the Bible, we are the subjects of our own history. God calls us to take our destiny into our minds, hearts, and hands. We drink from the local wells of our unique experience, and are fed by the Word of God, who calls us to be in Jerusalem, and throughout the world, authentic witnesses of the One and Only, who is the faithful and true witness (Rev 3:14).