Pope Francis to world leaders: open your doors to migrants [CNA]


#1

http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/images/size340/Pope_Francis_greets_pilgrims_during_his_March_16_2016_general_audience_Credit_Daniel_Ibaez_CNA.jpgVatican City, Mar 16, 2016 / 06:19 am (CNA/EWTN News).- On Wednesday Pope Francis renewed his appeal on behalf of the tens of thousands struggling to enter other countries as they flee war and violence, asking global leaders to “open their hearts” and doors to migrants and refugees.

“How many of our brothers are currently living a real and dramatic situation of exile, far away from their homeland, with their eyes still full of the rubble of their homes, and in their heart the fear, and often, unfortunately, the pain of having lost loved ones,” the Pope said March 16.

Such cases can often lead one to ask questions such as “where is God? How is it possible that so much suffering befalls innocent men, women and children?” he said.

Francis lamented that migrants and refugees fleeing violence in their homeland frequently find “closed doors” when attempting to enter another country.

These people suffer due to a loss of land, a lack of food, and they “don’t feel welcome,” he said, adding that “I like it a lot when I see nations, governments, who open their hearts and open their doors” to the migrants and refugees seeking to enter.

Pope Francis spoke to the nearly 40,000 pilgrims in St. Peter’s Square for his his March 16 general audience.

He continued his catechesis on mercy as understood through scripture, focusing his speech on Chapters 30-31 of the Book of Jeremiah, which also referred to as the “book of consolation” due to the hope the prophet announces.

Francis noted how in the passage read at the audience, the prophet Jeremiah goes to the Israelites, who were in exile, and announces the return to their homeland.

The re-entrance of the Israelites into their land is a sign “of the infinite love of God the Father who does not abandon his children, but cares for them and saves them,” he said.

The period of exile was “devastating” for Israel, he said, noting that after suffering so much due to the destruction of their country and the loss of their temple, it was hard for them to continue believing in the Lord’s goodness.

Pope Francis explained that we also experience a sort of exile today when experiences of suffering and death make us think that God has abandoned us.

However, despite the feelings of forgotten-ness and abandonment in such situations, the prophet Jeremiah gives us another response: “the exiled people can return to see their land and experience the mercy of the Lord.”

“God is not absent,” he said, explaining that this also goes for the “dramatic situations” of war and violence today.

He said that “we must not give in to despair,” but continue “to be confident that good overcomes evil and that the Lord dries every tear and frees us from every fear.”

Francis closed his address by pointing to the Jeremiah’s announcement that “I will turn their mourning into gladness, I will give them comfort and joy.”

Jesus has brought this message to fulfillment, he said, explaining that the “the true and radical return from exile and the comforting light after the darkness of the crisis of faith,” takes place at Easter.

In the resurrection of Jesus on Easter, we see “the full and definitive experience of the love of God, a merciful love which gives peace, joy and eternal life.”

After his speech Pope Francis offered special greetings to groups of pilgrims present from different countries around the world. In his greeting to Arab-speaking pilgrims, the Pope offered his solidarity to those in the Middle East who are currently suffering due to war and violence.

He lamented that there are many people who experience exile, desperation, grief and persecution, which can push one to doubt God’s love and goodness.

This doubt, he said, “dissipates in front of the truth that God is faithful, close, and keeps his promise to those who do not doubt Him, and for those who hope against hope.”

Francis noted that the Lord’s consolation is near to those “who pass through the agonizing night of doubt, clinging and hoping for the dawn of the Mercy of God, which the totality of the darkness and injustice will never be able to defeat.”

He closed his remarks by praying that the Lord would bless all who are living in such dramatic situations, and protect them from evil.

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#2

Can we take care of our homeless vets first?


#3

God bless Pope Francis!
:thumbsup:


#4

Does he speak only to Europe and America, or does he also speak to Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, Egypt, Iran and all the other Moslem countries of the Middle East, who have done nothing to help their own?:confused:

Countries have a right to be sovereign nations. They have a right to protect their borders, language and culture.

I pray that I might understand our Holy Father…


#5

Pope Francis is truly a man of great mercy and kindness, while he preaches tolerance and acceptance the politicians say we cant afford it, they are too different or they’ll bring crime. I say lets help our fellow man and, bring as much refugees we can take.


#6

You certainly can but it would be imprudent for the Holy Father, who speaks in the interests of the universal church and of the entire human race, to privilege a local American issue (not dismissing its importance) over that of a global humanitarian catastrophe that is impacting millions of displaced people and their host countries.


#7

True but one must keep in mind that the good of the broader human community takes precedence over any particular goods, including the goods of individual nation states.


#8

The “as…we can take” is the question. There are those who would ably argue that we have taken too many already. If millions in the U.S. are thrown into jobless poverty because unrestricted immigration has brought millions of illegal workers to this country; many of whom will work for very low wages, then it’s difficult to challenge the argument. And when, as now, the income of working people is declining due to causes upon which no one agrees, the argument has some basis for it, at least until more convincing arguments come along.


#9

So it is required under pain of serious sin, that American Catholics must support policies that the USA open its doors to millions more people from Mexico, Central and South America and also accept millions more Syrians, Iraqis, Libyans and Afghanistanis?


#10

Your not being obligated to take these individuals in.


#11

Jordan has helped a lot of Syrian refugees.


#12

I cant speak for the US on how many people they can take but, my country could do a great deal more to help refugees. Im also not talking about economic migrants but rather actual refugees, these are the people who need help such as the Syrians, Iraqis, the Yazidis and Christian minority’s. They are the ones who must be helped first then see who else we can help.


#13

God bless Pope Francis, the Vicar of Christ. The Pope said that

the Lord would bless all who are living in such dramatic situations, and protect them from evil.

I think its beautiful and a proper Christian thing for the USA to take in at least some refugees, 10,000. Jordan otoh, an Arab Muslim majority country, has taken in so many refugees that Jordan’s refugee population=25% of Jordan’s population. ISIL has caused this mess. My prayers go out to the loving and tolerate Muslims and Christians who are teaming up to remove ISIL from Iraq and Syria.


#14

These countries need stable Govt and the Rule of Law.

Encouraging illegal immigration doesn’t fix the underlying issues, which cause a never ending supply of people seeking the benefits your country offers.


#15

So Catholics don’t have to obey what the Holy Father says?


#16

God Bless these refugees, may the countries that supported the bloody dictatorship of Assad, the reason most of them are fleeing, take in more refugees, not bike into Norway which is the way it stands now.


#17

Amen!

Give a man a fish, you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.


#18

The Holy Father wasn’t speaking to the USA, obviously, as we already take more legal immigrants than any country in the world.:slight_smile:

He must have intended those countries that take less than the 2 Syrian families that the Vatican accepted. :slight_smile:


#19

We don’t have to agree with him on the precise nature of this issue.

America does allow migrants all of the time. Most of the students in my academic department are from other countries.

America doesn’t have a welcoming problem as a policy, America has a problem with entitlement-driven immigration that is scandalous in nature both with external and internal migration.


#20

Perhaps not in the way this comment intends. There needs to be a balance. The Vatican has stated this, so I’m not sure where the prior information comes from.

And if that’s true, what does that say about the UK banning people on the basis of the government not liking their speech?


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