2019 (EN)

"Great emotion to see King Abdullah II of Jordan and Queen Rania in the upper Basilica of St. Francis," said President Capasso, recalling the ancient bonds of friendship with the Royals and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, already with King Hussein bin Talal.
"King Abdullah has worked for the tolerance and unity of the Islamic world, marked by different ideological currents." This was stated by the Custos of the Sacred Convent of Assisi, Father Mauro Gambetti, on behalf of the Franciscan community, during the delivery of the "Lamp of Peace" to the King of Jordan, Abdullah II, accompanied by Queen Rania. The ceremony took place in the Upper Basilica of St. Francis, in the presence of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who received the gift last year.
In addition to Merkel, the Prime Minister, Giuseppe Conte, the president of the European Parliament, Antonio Tajani and the president of the CEI, Cardinal Gualtiero Bassetti, are seated in the front rows.
"We have been impressed by your enlightened guide and your words and gestures - said Father Gambetti to the sovereigns - his Majesty is dedicated to the promotion of human rights and interreligious harmony, he works for the reform of education and for protection of freedom of worship and is strenuously committed to providing a safe haven for millions of poor people ".
The lamp of peace is a reproduction of the votive lamp that burns in front of the tomb of St. Francis and over the years has been donated to political, cultural and civil society personalities who have distinguished themselves for their commitment to peace, dialogue and acceptance. On May 12 last year it was offered to Angela Merkel for her migration management policy and her commitment to "building a united and plural Europe".
Previously the lamp was offered to Lech Walesa (1981), Dalai Lama (1986), Giovanni Paolo II (1986), Madre Teresa di Calcutta (1986), Yasser Arafat (1990), Betty Williams (1995), Carlos Felipe Ximenes Belo (1997), Mikhail Gorbaciov (2008), Ingrid Betancourt (2009), Mohamed ElBaradei (2009), Benedetto XVI (2011), Shimon Peres (2013), Abu Mazen (2014), Papa Francesco (2015), Juan Manuel Santos (2016).
The message left by the King to the friars of Assisi is significant. "I am honored and moved - reads the message written in his own hand - to receive the lamp of the peace of St. Francis. My most sincere respect and appreciation for Father Gambetti and all the Franciscan friars from all over the world for their commitment and dedication to the values ​​of compassion and love and to their vows of poverty, chastity and obedience on the example of St. Francis".