Pope Francis prays the rosary © Vatican Media (CBA)
The daughter of U.S. civil rights leader Martin Luther King has praised the pope's words of warning on the ongoing unrest in the U.S. The pope had spoken out against racism and in favor of nonviolence.
"This is in line with my father's beliefs," Bernice King, 57, told the Vatican News portal (Saturday). She particularly highlighted the church leader's advocacy of nonviolence. Her father also believed that renouncing violence "is the answer to the crucial political and moral questions of our time," King said.
Pope expressed concern about unrest in the U.S
Earlier in the month, the pope had expressed "great concern" about the tense situation in the United States. Referring to the death of George Floyd, a black man, in a police shooting in Minneapolis on 25. May, he said, "We must not tolerate racism, nor must we turn a blind eye to it." At the same time, Francis stressed that "the violence of the past nights was self-destructive and counterproductive". Through violence, "nothing is gained, but so much is lost".
These statements would have been more certainly shared by her father, King said. He also said he believed that "violence cannot be cured by violence". Changes would have to be brought about in a peaceful way. Only then is it possible to ensure greater justice, Baptist preacher says.
Bernice King leads a memorial to her father, the King Center in Atlanta. She briefly served as president of the civil rights organization Southern Christian Leadership Conference. Politically, she made a name for herself as a supporter of Barack Obama during his 2008 presidential campaign. It also advocated for bans on same-sex marriage and abortion on several occasions. In 2018, Pope Francis received them in a private audience at the Vatican.