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Pope receives Sikhs from United Arab Emirates, praises selfless service

November 14, 2023

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CWN Editor's Note: Pope Francis received a Sikh delegation from the United Arab Emirates on November 11, three weeks before his scheduled trip to the Arab nation to address COP28, the 2023 United Nations Climate Change Conference.

“Selfless service rendered in particular to the least in our midst, and to those on the peripheries of society, besides making us consciously aware of our own littleness and insufficiency, bring us closer to God,” said Pope Francis, after citing Christ’s words in Matthew 25:35-36. “May service, then, always remain your way of life and may you be a blessing to all whom you serve in promoting the spirit of fraternity and equality, justice and peace!”

Founded on the Indian subcontinent, Sikhism dates from the late 15th century. Sikhs, like Christians, enjoy a relatively high degree of religious freedom in the Muslim-majority United Arab Emirates, and the government built the Sikhs a house of worship in Dubai, according to the US State Department’s 2022 Report on International Religious Freedom.

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