The numerous ongoing violent conflicts in the world and cautioned against the “logic of war and supremacy”, describing them as real threats to humanity.
Cardinal Nzapalainga underscored the need for peace across the globe, saying, “The world today is really in need of peace. Peace is becoming the most precious good that humanity is seeking. The logic of war and supremacy is a real threat to the human race and to our world, which is suspended from the unbridled appetites of the nuclear powers. ”
The Cardinal said that with the war in Ukraine and the various armed conflicts in several African countries, “it is as if humanity is preparing for the last war against man.”
“Let us not forget that violence breeds violence,” the Cardinal pointed out, adding that humanity “must learn to get out of this spiral, and this logic of war by wanting to settle everything with weapons.”
“True peace cannot be obtained through the use of force of weapons,” archbishop of Bangui pointed out and added, “True peace comes once the causes of conflicts and wars are known. Conflicts usually arise from situations of systemic injustice.”
He sought to correct misconceptions around the concept of globalization, insisting on the opportunities that it brings to human societies. “Globalization must not be seen today as the exclusion of the weakest or the extinction of nations that have long been dispossessed and dominated.”
In his considered view, “Globalization must be an opportunity in which all nations are symphonically called upon to participate in the concert of well-being and happiness.”
“The many conflicts in Africa today must challenge our universal conscience,” he said, and continued, “The construction of walls and alliance blocks in the West must remind us of the need for solidarity in Africa, Asia, the Middle East and everywhere else in the world.”
In order to reconcile people in conflict, Cardinal Nzapalainga believed, “One must be a peacemaker in the footsteps of Jesus Christ.”
“Beyond the simple etymological or definitional framework, peace is above all, a commitment. It’s an existentialist determination to create a framework of life where living together is made possible,” the Cardinal said, adding that “this can only happen if we draw from the deepest depths of our humanity the required energies.”
“To be a peacemaker requires a great capacity for judgment and analysis in order to be able to have a fair and objective hermeneutic of the situation and the belligerents in process,” he pointed out.
The peacemaker, Cardinal Nzapalainga continued, “Should not choose sides.” “They should be on the side of everyone, be impartial but without ever hiding or betraying the truth. We must invent words that move boundaries, words that liberate, words that give forgiveness.”
“When human language creates its own words for peace, for harmony, for living together for love, then our humanity will be restored and we can once again sing the hymn to love and let life flow through each of us,” Cardinal Nzapalainga confirmed.
Cardinal Dieudonné Nzapalainga, C.S.Sp., Archbishop of Bangui, Central African Republic, was born on 14 March 1967 in Mbomou, in the diocese of Bangassou, Central African Republic. He is the youngest and Central Africa’s first cardinal.
He was ordained a priest on 9 August 1998. In the following years, he obtained a licentiate in Theology at the Centre Sèvres of the Jesuits Fathers in France but was then recalled to the Central African Republic by his Institute to carry out the functions of Regional Superior.
Since 2009, he has been apostolic administrator of Bangui, and on 14 May 2012, Pope Benedict XVI appointed him as Metropolitan Archbishop of Bangui. He received episcopal consecration on 22 July of the same year. Since July 2013, he has served as president of the Episcopal Conference of the Central African Republic, and in that capacity, he participated in the Third Extraordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops on the Family in October 2014.
In November of 2015, he welcomed Pope Francis in his diocese. In Bangui, the Holy Father opened the first door of the Holy Year of Mercy.
Personally committed to the peace process in his country, in 2013, he participated alongside the president of the Islamic Council and the president of the Evangelical Alliance in Bangui, in the foundation of the interfaith Platform for Peace in Central Africa.