When we don't like someone at best we say we are tolerant. As if "tolerating" were a virtue. Just ignoring it would be a step forward. From there we could start on that long journey towards dialogue that passes through knowledge.

It takes time. The distance that separates tolerance from acceptance is great. Even the Catholic Church took a long time to take that path and it cannot be said that the path has been completed. However, the question is at the top of Pope Francis' agenda who on March 3, two days before leaving for his apostolic trip to Iraq, clarified the point of view of the Holy See: "I come as a pilgrim of Peace in search of fraternity, animated by the desire to pray together and walk together, also with brothers and sisters of other religious traditions, in the name of Father Abraham, who brings together Muslims, Jews and Christians in a single family”.

Important words, like those of other Popes who have focused on the common origin of monotheisms in recent decades. By embracing those invitations, the Foundation promoted a composition competition, "Instruments of Peace", between 2008 and 2012 which asked participants to find a synthesis between Abrahamic cultures by putting verses from the Old Testament, Gospels and Koran to music.

In the case of Bergoglio, it can be said that what culminated with a visit to Iraq is a process that began right from the beginning of his pontificate.

We are all in the same boat and we should row coordinated. Nobody can save themselves alone

The aim has always been to strengthen "human fraternity", the way believers call dialogue and mutual understanding. However, it is certain that in recent years there has been an acceleration. In 2019, a visit to the United Arab Emirates led to the signing of the Document on Human Fraternity for World Peace and Common Coexistence, signed by Francis together with the great imam Al-Tayyeb of Al-Azhar. It was then Morocco’s turn with the appeal for the city of Jerusalem signed together with King Mohammed VI. During the same period, the Pope also proposed the theme to countries such as Thailand and Japan.

The message is the same for everyone and has been repeatedly launched even during the 15 months of enforced immobility caused by the pandemic. An example is the prayer of March 27 last year in St. Peter's Square, during which Francis reiterated that we are all in the same boat and that we should row coordinated: no one can save themselves alone. On October 3, 2020, the encyclical Fratelli Tutti (All Brothers) systematized this thought. The invitation to social friendship is concrete and concerns every man and woman, believer or non-believer. The tool to use is dialogue. To be even more explicit, on 4 February Bergoglio participated, virtually, in the first World Day of Human Brotherhood announced by the United Nations and there he left no doubts: “Either we are brothers, if I may say so, or everything collapses. It is the frontier ... on which we must build; it is the challenge of our time ". Tolerance is not enough.

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