Paris: 55 years of Sant'Egidio with Cardinal Jean-Marc Aveline

Saint-Merry church in Paris was packed on Sunday afternoon, 3 December, for the celebration of the 55th anniversary of Sant'Egidio. The liturgy was presided over by Cardinal Jean-Marc Aveline, Archbishop of Marseille, in the presence of the Apostolic Nuncio in France, Archbishop Celestino Migliore, and a large number of bishops, priests, ecumenical and religious representatives, authorities, politicians, personalities of culture and members of civil society.

"Thank you, Community of Sant'Egidio," Cardinal Aveline said in his homily, "because you are trying to share in today's Church God's concern, God's commitment to his people and in particular to the poor, so that we never forget that God is worried about the globalisation of indifference." And the cardinal encouraged: 'Keep our whole Church awake so that we too may participate in God's concern, in God's care, so that we do not fall asleep, so that we do not become anaesthetised'.
Sant'Egidio people were present in large numbers, people of all ages and social conditions, including many homeless people, refugees, families from Ukraine and Syria arrived from Lebanon via the Humanitarian Corridors, lonely elderly people, children from the Schools of Peace accompanied by their parents and surrounded by members of the Community, in particular the Youth for Peace. A very heterogeneous group of people from Paris, Lyon, Marseille and many other French cities, who live everywhere their free commitment to the most vulnerable.
It was a "celebration of a special anniversary that focuses our attention and our gratitude on an Us that bears the beautiful name of Sant'Egidio, which I believe evokes so many stories and so much hope for each one of us", said Valérie Régnier, responsible for Sant'Egidio in France, in her greeting. She also thanked all the participants for their warm presence and for their friendship over the past year, stressing "how important the support of everyone is to continue working for peace that the world so desperately needs".