Catholic World News

Societies must support, promote migrants and refugees: papal message

August 21, 2017

The Vatican has released the message of Pope Francis for the World Day of Migrants and Refugees, which will be observed on January 14, 20018.

In his message the Pope reminds readers of the keen interest he takes in protecting the welfare of migrants. “Throughout the first years of my pontificate, I have repeatedly expressed my particular concern for the lamentable situation of many migrants and refugees fleeing from war, persecution, natural disasters and poverty,” he writes. He also notes that when he established the new Vatican dicastery for Integral Human Development, he stipulated that he personally would oversee the work of the section dedicated to helping migrants.

The Pope says that society has an obligation “to welcome, to protect, to promote, and to integrate” migrants and refugees. He suggests a number of steps that should be taken:

  • private and public sponsorship programs,
  • open humanitarian corridors for “particularly vulnerable” refugees,
  • temporary visas for people who flee from conflicts in neighboring countries,
  • special assistance and support for migrants with disabilities.

“Collective and arbitrary expulsions of migrants are not suitable solutions,” the Pope writes, “particularly where people are returned to countries which cannot guarantee respect for human dignity and fundamental rights.”

Pope Francis says that “the Church is ready to commit herself to realizing all the initiatives proposed above.”


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  • Posted by: jalsardl5053 - Aug. 22, 2017 1:08 AM ET USA

    Society has a greater obligation to assure that home countries welcome, protect, promote and integrate the peoples that live in them. Note: greater obligation. As far as I can tell, the pope has yet to soundly condemn the dictators, e.g. Maduro, Castro, et. al. that do guarantee NO respect for human dignity and fundamental rights. Can only hope he'll get it right someday.

  • Posted by: [email protected] - Aug. 21, 2017 11:13 PM ET USA

    How wonderful! Not all migrants are or should be welcome especially when their purpose is to change or destroy your country. Might be better to set up support where they originate. That way they can support each other. This is nothing but an open borders speech. The globalists would love it as it requires big government to run it. Central government and dictators are why we are in this mess. Save us from the socialist ideas of this Pope.

  • Posted by: normnuke - Aug. 21, 2017 10:23 PM ET USA

    This Pope once again demands that European and, especially, American peoples commit suicide in the name of his immense self-regard.