09/22/2017, 15.02
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Pope: in Europe "signs of rejection" of migrants also among Catholics

Francis warning to the European national directors of pastoral care for migrants. "From a missiological point of view, contemporary migratory flows constitute a new missionary frontier, a privileged opportunity to announce Jesus."

Vatican City (AsiaNews) - Even in Europe and among Catholic communities, there is "repression and rejection of migrants", "signs of intolerance, discrimination and xenophobia" in some parts of the continent. The warning comes from Pope Francis as he received the national directors of pastoral care for migrants, attending the meeting promoted by the Council of European Bishops' Conferences (CCEE) being held in Rome.


Francis noted that this "unease" should be recognized and understood in the light of a historic moment marked by the economic crisis, which has left deep wounds. This unease has also been exacerbated by the scale and composition of migratory flows, the substantial inadequacy of host societies and often inadequate national and community policies. But the discomfort is also indicative of the limits of the processes of European unification, of the obstacles that confront the concrete application of the universality of human rights and of the walls against which integral humanism, one of the most beautiful fruits of civilization European, is shattering."

"For Christians all this is to be interpreted beyond secular individualism, in the logic of the centrality of the human person created by God, unique and unrepeatable." And from a missiological perspective, contemporary migratory flows constitute a new missionary frontier, a privileged opportunity to announce Jesus Christ and his Gospel without moving from his environment, to concretely testify the Christian faith in charity and in deep respect for other religious expressions. The meeting with migrants and refugees from other confessions and religions is a fertile ground for the development of a genuine and enriching ecumenical and interreligious dialogue. "

The Pope finally reaffirmed what he wrote in the message for the World Day for Migrants and Refugees  of next year that "the pastoral response to contemporary migration challenges should be articulated around four verbs: welcome, protect, promote, integrate. The verb welcome then translates into other verbs such as expanding  legal and safe entry routes, offering a first adequate and decent accommodation and securing personal security and access to basic services for everyone. The verb to protect is specified in providing reliable and certified information before leaving, defending the fundamental rights of migrants and refugees irrespective of their migratory status and watch over the most vulnerable, which are children and women. Promoting means essentially ensuring conditions for the integral human development of all, migrants and indigenous people. The integrating verb translates into p opening intercultural encounters, encouraging mutual enrichment, and promoting active paths towards citizenship. "

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