Pope Francis, whose progressive notions have previously seen their expression in formal, papal addresses, used his Easter message to once again weigh in on the migration crisis that has plagued much of Western Europe. The pontiff raised the subject in his Christmas message, but this time saw fit to pointedly admonish those who would stand in the way of migrants from the Middle East and North Africa seeking a better life on the European Continent.
In his urbi et orbi (“to the city and the world”) address from the Vatican, Pope Francis declared that, “The Easter message of the risen Christ, a message of life for all humanity, echoes down the ages and invites us not to forget those men and women seeking a better future, an ever more numerous throng of migrants and refugees — including many children — fleeing from war, hunger, poverty and social injustice.”
In taking a swipe at those who have resisted the mass migration taking place across Europe, the pope said that, “All too often, these brothers and sisters of ours meet along the way with death or, in any event, rejection by those who could offer them welcome and assistance.”
The pope’s knock on those who’ve expressed everything from fear to great anger over migrants swamping their nations is pointedly different from recent remarks made by Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, who said it is “outrageous” to characterize those concerned about migration and its impact as racist. The Archbishop of Canterbury is the head of the Church of England and the worldwide Anglican Communion.
The pope also said in his address that while terrorism is “a blind and brutal violence,” that it should be defeated through the use of “weapons of love.”
By Robert G. Yetman, Jr. Editor At Large