Pope Francis – who lives behind one of the most gated communities in the world, the Vatican – nonetheless told Christians that rebelling against the acceptance of refugees was hypocritical.
“People who call themselves Christians but do not want refugees at their door are hypocrites, Pope Francis said Thursday, amid reports of new tragedies involving migrants crossing the Mediterranean.
“‘It is hypocritical to call yourself a Christian and to chase away a refugee, or anyone who needs your help. Jesus taught us what it means to be a good Christian in the parable of the Good Samaritan,’ Francis said in a meeting with German Lutheran pilgrims at the Vatican.”
Vatican City, with its own government, its own police force and its own sovereign control of its inner affairs, is fully walled and contained. The pope, who lives within its walls, is the formal head of the city – and could therefore open doors to any number of refugees.
Months ago, amid a hail of fawning media coverage, Francis did take in 12 refugees from Syria and flew them to the Vatican. In June, the Vatican announced the pope was also resettling another nine Syrian refugees – in Rome.
But take a look at the makeup of these refugees the pope’s welcomed. They were by and large families – and by and large, not Muslim. At least some.
From the Catholic Herald, in 2015:
“Embracing Pope Francis’ request to sponsor a refugee family, the Vatican’s St Anne parish has welcomed a family of four from Damascus, Syria. …
“The papal Almoner’s Office, which responds to individual requests for assistance and helps coordinate Pope Francis’ direct requests for assisting the homeless in Rome, announced on September 18 that a refugee family was being cared for by St Anne’s parish inside Vatican City.
“The family – a mother, father and two children – belong to the Melkite Catholic Church, one of the Byzantine-rite churches in full union with Rome.”
What, no unaccompanied males masquerading as minor-aged but appearing more like fully grown men? Strange.
More from DPA:
“The pope, a vocal champion of migrant rights who was born in Argentina from an Italian immigrants, earlier issued a message ahead of the World Day of Migrants and Refugees, which the Catholic Church will observe on January 15.
“‘Children are the first among those to pay the heavy toll of emigration, almost always caused by violence, poverty, environmental conditions, as well as the negative aspects of globalization,’ Francis said in the message.
“Renewing arguments that welcoming migrants is a Christian duty, the pope cited a passage from the Biblical Book of Exodus stating: ‘You shall not wrong a stranger or oppress him, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.’
“He criticized attempts ‘to curb the entrance of migrants, which in turns fosters illegal networks’ for people smuggling and trafficking, ‘instead of favouring the social integration of child migrants, or programmes for safe and assisted repatriation.’
“Francis said governments should balance their right to control migration flows ‘with the duty to resolve and regularize the situation of child migrants,’ saving them from abuse, exploitation and the ‘lowest levels of human degradation.’”