On World Water Day, Pope Francis urged, during his General Audience on Wednesday, that water must not be wasted or abused and shall not be a ground for wars.
“Water must never be the object of waste or abuse, or provide the grounds for war, but must be preserved for our benefit and that of future generations,” Pope Francis said.
The Pope recalled the words of St Francis of Assisi’ in his ode to creation, echoed in Laudato sì: “Praised be you, my Lord, through Sister Water, who is very useful and humble and precious and chaste.”
In these simple words, he said, "we feel the beauty of creation and the awareness of the challenges involved in caring for it.”
World Water Day occurs annually on March 22, marking this primary need to raise awareness of the 2 billion people without access to safe drinking water.
The first UN Water Conference occurred in Argentina in 1977.
After five decades, the second UN Water Conference is occurring at the United Nations headquarters in New York from March 22-24 to raise awareness of the global water crisis and decide on the action to achieve internationally agreed water-related goals.
“I pray for the success of the work and hope that the important event will accelerate initiatives in favor of those who suffer from the scarcity of water, this primary good,” he said.
Pope Francis sent a message to the participants of the second UN Water Conference to ensure the fundamental human right to water.
In his message, the Pope hoped that the UN Water Conference in New York would provide the world with the needed solutions for “the right to life, to the future, and to hope” to be “fully accomplished.”
The Pope encouraged the entire international community to join forces to create a consensus to allow humanity’s integral development. - With inputs from Vatican News
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