Pope Benedict XVI has held a mass at Saint Peter's Basilica to mark the close of the two-week special synod of bishops on the Middle East. In his homily he said that c one must never resign oneself to the lack of peace. Peace is possible, it is urgent and it is the indispensable condition for a life worthy of the human person and of society. Israel's initial response to pleas to "put an end to the occupation of Palestinian territories" have not been encouraging.
Pope Benedict called on Islamic countries in the Middle East to guarantee freedom of worship to non-Muslims and said peace in the region was the best remedy for a worrying exodus of Christians.
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