As we were putting together this issue of ONE, we were reminded of an old Simon and Garfunkel song, “What a time it was…”
Benedict XVI had announced his resignation. Cardinals had gathered for the conclave. A dramatic moment in history was unfolding before our eyes as an Argentine Jesuit was elected bishop of Rome.
Meanwhile, we continued to monitor events in the Middle East. To look at that corner of our world today is to see almost unimaginable suffering. War in Syria has led to a staggering humanitarian crisis. Christians in Egypt face a frightening and uncertain future. Simmering divisions in the land we call “holy” create more challenges and difficulties for people of all faiths.
Against this backdrop, in this enhanced edition of ONE, we have chosen to spotlight the Middle East and to lead off with some timely reflections from Pope Francis. His first words to the world, underscore the vital work we at CNEWA have undertaken in his name. It is work we could not carry out without your generous and prayerful support. In the pages of this magazine, we invite you to discover the ways your support is changing lives — and we encourage you to visit us online at www.cnewa.org to learn how you can continue to make a difference to so many in urgent need. When you visit ONE online, you will also find exclusive multimedia features and videos that will continue to inform, engage and inspire.
In this time of transition and change — for the Catholic Church, for the Middle East and even here at ONE as we redesign our magazine — we look at this moment in our world with wonder and hope. “What a time it was” indeed! It is our prayer that ONE — both in print and online — will be a valuable chronicle of that time.