It’s a favorite theme for him. He recently called upon European Catholics to shelter refugees, as thousands of illegal aliens swarm into the continent. He said each church should provide a place to stay for a family, which would spread out the foreigners into every catholic parish. It wouldn’t solve the problem when hundreds of thousands are crowding in: churches providing shelter for a relative few is just empty symbolism that the press will love.
Perhaps the pope thought he should act as a good example, and accordingly he announced that a Syrian family would be welcomed into housing in the Vatican mini-country. Conveniently, the family is Christian, while the great majority of the hordes breaching Europe are young Muslim men who are very demanding about how they should be treated.
The latest figures from Eurostat reveal that only 20 percent of recent illegal entrants are Syrian, with the rest being economic opportunists from Bangladesh to South Sudan. So the great majority flooding to Europe now are not war refugees at all. Nevertheless, the lefty pope believes that law and sovereignty should be thrown out and replaced with utopian do-gooder fantasies.
Pope Francis puts up Syrian refugee family, The Local (Italy), September 18, 2015
Pope Francis is putting up a Syrian refugee family from Damascus in a Vatican apartment, aides revealed on Friday.
The Christian family is the first of two that the Catholic leader has promised to find space for as part of a broader Church effort to help shape Europe’s response to the ongoing migration crisis, partly caused by the conflict in Syria.
The family arrived in Italy on September 6th, the day the pope called on every Catholic parish across Europe to find space for at least one family of refugees.
The family arrived in Italy on September 6, the day the pope called on every Catholic parish across Europe to find space for at least one family of refugees.
The family being housed in the Vatican is to remain anonymous until Italian authorities have ruled on their asylum request.
As Christians who have fled a Syria wracked by a deadly civil war and the persecution of minorities, they are highly likely to be quickly granted leave to remain in Italy.
The processing of their application could however take months, possibly years, unless they are made a special case.
In his call for the Church to take a lead on the migration issue, Francis urged local communities of believers to make a “concrete gesture” ahead of a Jubilee Year of Mercy starting in December.
He said “every parish, every religious community, every monastery, every sanctuary in Europe,” should take part.
“Faced with the tragedy of tens of thousands of asylum-seekers fleeing death (as) victims of war and hunger who are hoping to start a new life, the gospel calls on us and asks us to be the neighbour of the smallest and the most abandoned, to give them concrete hope,” he said in a Sunday address in St Peter’s square.
The Argentinian pontiff has made the fate of society’s weakest, including the hundreds of thousands of migrants arriving in Europe, the dominant theme of his papacy.
His call for a grassroots response to the crisis has been widely praised and he acknowledged that initiatives across Europe had inspired him, comparing them to a biblical miracle in which which Jesus heals a deaf and mute man.
“We have been healed of the deafness of selfishness and the silence of retreating into ourselves,” he said.
“The closed couple, the closed family, the closed group, the closed parish, the closed country, that comes from us, it has nothing to do with God.”
The fate of migrants is also expected to be a theme in the pope’s visit to the United States next week.
Since taking office in 2013, Francis has also stepped up the Vatican’s support for the homeless living within its walls and across Rome, notably by having showers installed in public toilets in St Peter’s square.
And he has personally eschewed the Vatican palace and summer residence he could have occupied in favour of a modest boarding house.