Message for the ‘Run4Unity Marathon’

It is with great joy that I stand to give this Message on the auspicious occasion of the 6th Worldwide Run4Unity Marathon, a run for Peace in the World, jointly organized by Focolare Movement and Shanti Ashram, on the occasion of the Centenary of Champaran Satyagraha.

As the Representative of His Holiness Pope Francis, I take this opportunity to convey to you the Focolarini, the inmates of Shanti Ashram, all the participants and organizers of Run4Uninty, apostolic greetings and blessings from the Holy Father Pope Francis. Let me also communicate to you, my heartiest congratulations, prayers and best wishes.

The aim of this Worldwide Run4unity is, “to build a world of peace and universal brotherhood, with the values shared by Chiara Lubich, the foundress of the Focolare Movement and Mahatma Gandhi. Chiara Lubich, with her life and words, showed the way “to universal brotherhood”. She traced out “a way of religious and civil holiness that can be practiced by anyone and not reserved for only a chosen few”. Lubich has thus inaugurated “a new season of communion in the Church and that she opened channels of ecumenical dialogue that had never before been used”. Moreover, her “spiritual family welcomed the faithful of other religions and people without any religious affiliation”.

According to Gandhi the golden rule of conduct amongst the religions and cultures is mutual toleration. He writes: “The only possible rule of conduct in any civilised society is, therefore, mutual toleration”.

Pope Francis, in his ‘Apostolic Letter to all Consecrated People’, addresses the Christians and the Non-Christians saying: “Journeying together always brings enrichment, and can open new paths to relationships between peoples and cultures, which nowadays appear so difficult”.

I am happy to see that today, the ‘Worldwide Run4Unity Marathon “becomes an instrument through which, in many cities of different countries, hundreds of thousands of youngsters of all cultures, races and religions will race together to bear witness to their commitment to peace and to promote a way to reach this peace: the Golden Rule: ‘Do unto others what you would have them do unto you’.


In 1977, at the Eucharistic Congress in Pescara, Chiara Lubich stated: “The pen doesn’t know what it must write, the brush doesn’t know what it must paint, and the chisel doesn’t know what it must sculpt. When God takes someone into his hands in order to raise a new work in his Church, the person chosen doesn’t know what he/she should do. He/She is just the instrument”.

It is my prayer and wish that today, the Worldwide Run4Unity Marathon, be “an instrument”, in the hands of God, to promote peace and universal brotherhood in the world. May God bless you all.