Pope calls on European parishes to host refugees

Pope Francis today called on every European parish and religious community to take in one migrant family each in a gesture of solidarity he said would start in the tiny Vatican state where he lives.

“I appeal to the parishes, the religious communities, the monasteries and sanctuaries of all Europe to … take in one family of refugees,” he said after his Sunday address in the Vatican.

The pope’s call goes out to tens of thousands of Catholic parishes in Europe as the number of refugees arriving over land through the Balkans and across the Mediterranean to Italy and Greece hits record levels.

Migrants confronting Macedonian police during clashes at the Greek-Macedonian border, today.
Migrants and police at the Greek-Macedonian border

There are more than 25,000 parishes in Italy alone, and more than 12,000 in Germany, where many of the Syrians fleeing civil war and people trying to escape poverty and hardship in other countries say they want to end up.

The crowd in St. Peter’s Square applauded as the pontiff, himself the grandson of Italian emigrants to Argentina, said: “Every parish, every religious community, every monastery, every sanctuary of Europe, take in one family.”

The Vatican’s two parishes will take in a family of refugees each in the coming days, said Francis, whose first trip after his election was to the Italian island of Lampedusa, halfway between Sicily and Tunisia, where many migrants arrive by boat.

The Italian coast guard said on Saturday it had coordinated the rescue of 329 migrants who made distress calls from their rubber boats.

Francis said taking in migrant families was a “concrete gesture” to prepare for the extraordinary Holy Year on the theme of mercy which is due to begin on December 8.

Source: Reuters

4 Responses to Pope calls on European parishes to host refugees

  1. Janette Reifer
    Janette Reifer September 6, 2015 at 1:43 pm

    Begining with the Vatican. It has lots of spaces.

  2. Alex Alleyne September 6, 2015 at 4:35 pm

    The effects of REGILOUS wars.

  3. seagul September 7, 2015 at 5:15 am

    The world knows this is just hot air–They have an endemic hatred for Muslims in Europe…..Islamaphobia

  4. jrsmith September 7, 2015 at 12:15 pm

    These people should all be sent to politicians homes, in Europe,USA,UK Russia , the politicians cause this problem, starting a war ,which is going to be fuelled , by generation to generation , this is just the tip of the iceberg.

    I do hope , politicians from the west Indian regions wise up and learn from this serious emigration problem, the movement of people ,whether lawful or not. politicians are the world spoilers.


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