- During his meeting with the youth of the Central African Republic, Pope Francis gave spontaneous comments in response to a young local who asked the Holy Father's advice about living in a war-torn country. .
“We have been taken by heavy winds and violence...these challenges remain numerous,” the young man told the Holy Father, pointing out that the symbol of their country was the banana tree because it is resistant and life-giving.
The young man expressed that he and many of his friends are tempted to leave the violence and difficulties of their homeland in the Central African Republic. Since 2012, over 6,000 people in the CAR have died from violence spread by Muslim rebel groups challenging the country’s presidential power.
Pope Francis’ visit to the CAR is the most dangerous yet, as the country is considered to be an active war zone.
This friend who spoke in all of your name said that your symbol is the banana tree, because the banana is the symbol of life, it always grows, always produces, gives life, nutrients, energy.
The banana plant is very resistant. I think that this tells us very clearly the way that's proposed to us during this difficult time of war: the way of resistance.