As he promised, Pope Francis showed up Monday on a southerly outpost of Europe to express sympathy with illegal alien Africans seeking to take European jobs at a time of high unemployment. (See my blog from last week Pope Will Pray for Invasive Africans, but Has No Apparent Compassion for Italians Who Bear the Brunt.)
Below, the Pope welcomed African workers to job-starved Europe in overwhelmed Lampedusa.
The Pope is behaving like a typical liberal, being generous with things that don’t belong to him. Europe is short millions of jobs for its own people, but Francis thinks Europeans are too selfish in wanting to maintain their culture and economy.
Why doesn’t Pope Francis prove his sincerity by welcoming a few hundred Africans to the country he rules? Vatican City is a nation of its own, with territory of 110 acres, an American ambassador and a flag. The most effective leadership comes from setting a good example, and the new Pope is missing a big opportunity to flaunt his virtue. Most of the Africans are likely Muslims, but that’s a big plus among crazy-leftist Europeans.
Al Jazeera’s report on the Pope’s do-gooder trip was surprisingly decent:
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Britain’s leftist Guardian newspaper seemed kindly disposed toward the Pope, perhaps because of his extreme statement favoring the right of the worldwide poor to violate European sovereignty. This pro-illegal immigration view is an article of Catholic doctrine, as expressed by priest Michael Seifert during a 2005 Texas protest: “Any family in economic need has a right to immigrate, that’s our posture, if a family is hungry and the family needs work, then society should provide a way for people to do that.” The attention to Europe’s homegrown poor and their right to a job was lost because of the emotive photo op provided by the papal junket.
Pope Francis condemns global indifference to suffering, The Guardian, July 8, 2013
Pope uses visit to island of Lampedusa to highlight plight of migrants and asylum seekers who die trying to reach Europe
In perhaps the sternest homily of his papacy so far, Pope Francis has inveighed against “the globalisation of indifference”.
Speaking on Monday on the small island of Lampedusa, the point of entry into Europe for tens of thousands of migrants and asylum seekers, Francis said: “We have become used to the suffering of others. It doesn’t affect us. It doesn’t interest us. It’s not our business.”
Wearing vestments of penitential purple, the pope said he had chosen to visit Lampedusa on his first journey out of the Vatican after learning of a recent incident in which migrants had died at sea while attempting to cross from north Africa. The thought of their suffering had come back to him repeatedly like “a thorn in the heart”, he said.
As his plane landed, more than 160 Eritreans were coming ashore in the port – the latest of almost 8,000 arrivals on Italy’s southern coasts so far this year, according to UN figures. Another 40 are known to have died.
Using prayers for the remission of sins, the pope celebrated mass within sight of the “graveyard of wrecks”, where fishing boats carrying migrants and asylum seekers end up after they drift ashore, often having broken down at sea. He ended his sermon by asking for forgiveness “for the indifference towards so many of our brothers and sisters”.
But the pope also praised the contribution of Italian coastguard and revenue guard rescuers, and of the Lampedusans themselves. “You offered an example of solidarity,” he told them.
Though the treeless island, 70 miles off the African coast, has at times been turned into a refugee camp, most Lampedusans have reacted with generosity and tolerance to the migrants. Most of their protests have been directed at the authorities’ failure to provide them with sufficient resources.
A banner draped along the pope’s route read: “Welcome among the ultimi”, a word in Italian that has connotations of both furthest and least.
Dozens of local fishing boats accompanied the pope as he made his way from the airport to the port on board a coastguard patrol boat that has plucked thousands of migrants from the Mediterranean. Commemorating those who failed to reach safety, Francis, whose own grandparents emigrated from Italy, threw a wreath of flowers in the papal colours of yellow and white into the water.