Abune Mathias Urges Ethiopians to Uphold Reconciliation, Forgiveness

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Addis Ababa September 26/2022 /ENA/ Patriarch of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church, Abune Mathias urged all Ethiopians to promote peace and harmony among themselves by upholding reconciliation and forgiveness.

Ethiopian Orthodox Church followers have colorfully celebrated today Demera, an annual bonfire lighting ceremony on the eve of the anniversary of Meskel, the finding of the true cross.

May be an image of 4 people, people standing, fire and outdoors

At Meskel Square, Addis Ababa, Demera— a bonfire which is lit to symbolize the smoke that led Empress Helena to the true cross, was celebrated in the presence of Abune Mathias, Patriarch of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church, President Sahle-Work Zewde and Adanech Abiebie, mayor of Addis Ababa, ministers, diplomats, bishops, the clergy and faithful of the church.

During the occasion, the Patriarch Abune Mathias said in his message that human being has no other alternative than upholding reconciliation and amnesty in order to prevent conflict and hatred.

In order to instil such values into the minds of human beings, the Patriarch stressed the need to avoid egocentric and selfish attitude.

 Promoting harmony, understanding, equality, kindness and intimacy among the people will help strengthen unity and love, he underlined.

The only way to avoid conflict among us is through harmony and mercy, he said, noting that Jesus had taught human beings by pardoning those who had wronged him.      

The Patriarch urged all Ethiopians to promote peace and harmony among themselves by upholding  reconciliation and forgiveness.  

Mayor of Addis Ababa, Adanech Abiebie said for her part that the Meskel festival is one of the key religious and traditional holidays that has been promoting Ethiopia in the globe in terms of tourism.

She urged all Ethiopians to avoid hatred and enhance love and harmony with a view to bring sustainable peace.   

Culture and Sports Minister Kejela Merdasa said on his part as Meskel is world heritage, it has been providing several economic and social benefits to Ethiopia.

In this regard, the government is committed to protecting, promoting and preserving national heritages like Meskel for the benefit of the country, he said.  

The holy Demera bonfire lighting signifies the efforts made by the Roman Empress Helena in the fourth century to find the cross.

The official day of the feast of the finding of the True Cross, Meskel will be celebrated on Tuesday across the nation with various religious and traditional ceremonies.

Meskel has been registered as world intangible heritage by UNESCO in December 2013.