Pope Francis marked the first-ever International Day of Human Fraternity on Thursday, in a virtual event hosted by Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed in Abu Dhabi, with the participation of the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar, Ahmad Al-Tayyeb, UN Secretary-General António Guterres, and other personalities.

During the occasion, the Holy Father, in words prepared for the occasion, expressed his gratitude to those who had contributed to the promotion of fraternity in spite of the challenges.

“Sisters and brothers - that is the word,” the Pope said. “Sisters and brothers to affirm fraternity in a special way to you, my brother, my friend, my companion of challenges and risks in the struggle for fraternity.”

The Pope offered special recognition to the Grand Imam, Ahmad Al-Tayyeb, for his testimony and collaboration in writing the document presented two years ago. Pope Francis also expressed his gratitude to the Crown Prince of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, for his belief in the project, and Judge Abdel Salam for his active participation in its advancement.

“Thank you all for committing to fraternity,” Pope Francis said, “because today fraternity is the new frontier of humanity. Either we are brothers, or we destroy each other.”

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