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    » 09/24/2013, 00.00

    VATICAN

    Pope: "Migrants and refugees are not pawns on the chessboard of humanity"



    " Migrants and Refugees: Towards a Better World” is the theme chosen by Francis for the Day that will be celebrated on January 19. In his message, the Pope writes that when faced with a phenomenon of unprecedented proportions calls for international cooperation and a spirit of profound solidarity and compassion”, "close collaboration between the migrants’ countries of origin and their countries of destination" and " , the elimination of prejudices and presuppositions in the approach to migration", "to see, and then to enable others to see, that migrants and refugees do not only represent a problem to be solved, but are brothers and sisters to be welcomed, respected and loved. They are an occasion that Providence gives us to help build a more just society, a more perfect democracy, a more united country, a more fraternal world and a more open and evangelical Christian community. "

    Vatican City ( AsiaNews) - The reality of migration , which in our time has reached unprecedented proportions, "needs to be approached and managed in a new, equitable and effective manner" because "migrants and refugees are not pawns on the chessboard of ' humanity "and" can not be reduced to mere economic growth, development , achieved , often without looking at the weakest and most defenseless . " Faced with the phenomenon of "children, women and men who leave or are forced to leave their homes for various reasons, who share a legitimate desire for knowing and having, but above all for being more", calls for "international cooperation and a spirit of profound solidarity and compassion",  close collaboration between the migrants' countries of origin and their countries of destination" and " , the elimination of prejudices and presuppositions in the approach to migration".

    Looking at migration as "a sign of the times", indicating "the aspiration of humanity to live in unity with respect for differences, the welcome and hospitality that enable the equitable sharing of the point to the aspiration of humanity to enjoy a unity marked by respect for differences, by attitudes of acceptance and hospitality which enable an equitable sharing of the world's goods, and by the protection and the advancement of the dignity and centrality of each human being".  This is the meaning of the theme chosen by Pope Francis - " Migrants and refugees : towards a better world " - for the next world Day of Migrants and Refugees, which will be celebrated on Sunday, January 19, 2014 .

    In his message for the event, the Pope explains the choice by saying that " Our societies are experiencing, in an unprecedented way, processes of mutual interdependence and interaction on the global level. While not lacking problematic or negative elements, these processes are aimed at improving the living conditions of the human family, not only economically, but politically and culturally as well. Each individual is a part of humanity and, with the entire family of peoples, shares the hope of a better future". "What is involved in the creation of "a better world"? The expression does not allude naively to abstract notions or unattainable ideals; rather, it aims at an authentic and integral development, at efforts to provide dignified living conditions for everyone, at finding just responses to the needs of individuals and families, and at ensuring that God's gift of creation is respected, safeguarded and cultivated".

    " From the Christian standpoint, the reality of migration, like other human realities, points to the tension between the beauty of creation, marked by Grace and the Redemption, and the mystery of sin. Solidarity, acceptance, and signs of fraternity and understanding exist side by side with rejection, discrimination, trafficking and exploitation, suffering and death. Particularly disturbing are those situations where migration is not only involuntary, but actually set in motion by various forms of human trafficking and enslavement. Nowadays, "slave labour" is common coin! Yet despite the problems, risks and difficulties to be faced, great numbers of migrants and refugees continue to be inspired by confidence and hope; in their hearts they long for a better future, not only for themselves but for their families and those closest to them".

    "While encouraging the development of a better world, we cannot remain silent about the scandal of poverty in its various forms. Violence, exploitation, discrimination, marginalization, restrictive approaches to fundamental freedoms, whether of individuals or of groups: these are some of the chief elements of poverty which need to be overcome. Often these are precisely the elements which mark migratory movements, thus linking migration to poverty. Fleeing from situations of extreme poverty or persecution in the hope of a better future, or simply to save their own lives, millions of persons choose to migrate. Despite their hopes and expectations, they often encounter mistrust, rejection and exclusion, to say nothing of tragedies and disasters which offend their human dignity.

    The reality of migration, given its new dimensions in our age of globalization, needs to be approached and managed in a new, equitable and effective manner; more than anything, this calls for international cooperation and a spirit of profound solidarity and compassion. Cooperation at different levels is critical, including the broad adoption of policies and rules aimed at protecting and promoting the human person. Pope Benedict XVI sketched the parameters of such policies, stating that they "should set out from close collaboration between the migrants' countries of origin and their countries of destination; they should be accompanied by adequate international norms able to coordinate different legislative systems with a view to safeguarding the needs and rights of individual migrants and their families, and at the same time, those of the host countries" (Caritas in Veritate, 62). Working together for a better world requires that countries help one another, in a spirit of willingness and trust, without raising insurmountable barriers. A good synergy can be a source of encouragement to government leaders as they confront socioeconomic imbalances and an unregulated globalization, which are among some of the causes of migration movements in which individuals are more victims than protagonists. No country can singlehandedly face the difficulties associated with this phenomenon, which is now so widespread that it affects every continent in the twofold movement of immigration and emigration

    "Finally, in considering the situation of migrants and refugees, I would point to yet another element in building a better world, namely, the elimination of prejudices and presuppositions in the approach to migration. Not infrequently, the arrival of migrants, displaced persons, asylum-seekers and refugees gives rise to suspicion and hostility. There is a fear that society will become less secure, that identity and culture will be lost, that competition for jobs will become stiffer and even that criminal activity will increase. The communications media have a role of great responsibility in this regard: it is up to them, in fact, to break down stereotypes and to offer correct information in reporting the errors of a few as well as the honesty, rectitude and goodness of the majority. A change of attitude towards migrants and refugees is needed on the part of everyone, moving away from attitudes of defensiveness and fear, indifference and marginalization - all typical of a throwaway culture - towards attitudes based on a culture of encounter, the only culture capable of building a better, more just and fraternal world. The communications media are themselves called to embrace this "conversion of attitudes" and to promote this change in the way migrants and refugees are treated.


    "The Church, responding to Christ's command to "go and make disciples of all nations", is called to be the People of God which embraces all peoples and brings to them the proclamation of the Gospel, for the face of each person bears the mark of the face of Christ! Here we find the deepest foundation of the dignity of the human person, which must always be respected and safeguarded. It is less the criteria of efficiency, productivity, social class, or ethnic or religious belonging which ground that personal dignity, so much as the fact of being created in God's own image and likeness (cf. Gen 1:26-27) and, even more so, being children of God. Every human being is a child of God! He or she bears the image of Christ! We ourselves need to see, and then to enable others to see, that migrants and refugees do not only represent a problem to be solved, but are brothers and sisters to be welcomed, respected and loved. They are an occasion that Providence gives us to help build a more just society, a more perfect democracy, a more united country, a more fraternal world and a more open and evangelical Christian community. Migration can offer possibilities for a new evangelization, open vistas for the growth of a new humanity foreshadowed in the paschal mystery: a humanity for which every foreign country is a homeland and every homeland is a foreign country".

     

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    See also

    23/09/2014 VATICAN
    Pope: tolerance towards migrants is not enough, they need welcome and solidarity
    Titled "Church without frontiers, mother to all" the message for the next World Day of Migrants and Refugees is released. " Often, however, such migration gives rise to suspicion and hostility, even in ecclesial communities". "Solidarity with migrants and refugees must be accompanied by the courage and creativity necessary to develop, on a world-wide level, a more just and equitable financial and economic order".

    01/10/2015 VATICAN
    Pope: “indifference and silence lead to complicity whenever we stand by as people are dying”
    In his message for the World Day of Migrants and Refugees, Francis invites people to find in a response to the phenomenon of migration in the Gospel of mercy. "Important to view migrants not only on the basis of their status as regular or irregular ", but as people who "are capable of contributing to progress and the general welfare." "The need to help the countries from which migrants and refuge leave". "Public opinion also needs to be correctly formed, not least to prevent unwarranted fears and speculations detrimental to migrants".

    19/01/2014 VATICAN
    Pope: Be followers of Jesus, the Lamb of God who takes away (and upon himself) the sins of the world
    At the Angelus, Pope Francis insists on Christ’s example that only love conquers evil and sin. The Church is not "a besieged citadel", but "a city set on a mountain, open, welcoming and supportive". Thanks to the Scalabrini for their efforts on behalf of migrants and against the "merchants of human flesh".

    06/04/2016 17:51:00 ORTHODOXY – VATICAN
    Francis, Bartholomew, and Ieronymos: Christian unity in favour of refugees, Europe’s embarrassment

    Cardinal Parolin has received an official letter of invitation for Pope Francis. On 15 April, the pope, together with the ecumenical patriarch of Constantinople and the Orthodox archbishop of Athens will be in Lesbos to meet refugees stranded on the island. "Europe has become insignificant in global terms because it has commodified Christianity". The ecumenical journey is the joint mission of Christians in the contemporary world.



    27/11/2009 VATICAN
    Pope: the migrant, person with inalienable fundamental rights to be respected always by all
    In his message for the 96th World Day for Migrants and Refugees, Pope Benedict XVI focuses on the plight of children living outside their country. Structures must be created for them to allow a real integration.



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