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Refugees hope for change following papal visit

Catholic World News - May 22, 2014

On May 24, the first day of his pilgrimage to the Holy Land, Pope Francis will meet with refugees at the Latin church in Bethany beyond the Jordan-- raising hopes on the part of the refugees that their plight will change.

Wael Suleiman, director of Caritas Jordan, told the Fides news agency that “the Syrian and Iraqi refugees are looking forward to the Pope’s visit and are filled with hope and trepidation: among Iraqis, some have been living the refugee status for over 20 years. Everyone expects the world will remember them, and that something will really change.”

Noting that 20,000 of the estimated 1.3 million Syrian refugees in Jordan are Christians, Suleiman said that “it is unlikely that Christians will return to Syria at the end of the war. This means that in some cities, like Homs and Aleppo, many Christian neighborhoods will remain empty.”

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