VATICAN CITY (RNS) — Pope Francis used robust phrases to criticize the mistreatment and abandonment of migrants in his homily on Sunday (Oct. 10) throughout a mass the place he canonized Italian Bishop Giovanni Battista Scalabrini, formally making a saint the priest known as the ‘Father of Migrants.’
“The exclusion of migrants is scandalous!” the pope mentioned, talking off the cuff. “Worse but, the exclusion of migrants is prison, it lets them die earlier than our eyes.”
Francis famous particularly the drama of migrants within the Mediterranean Sea, the place greater than 3,000 migrants died throughout their perilous journey towards Europe in 2021, twice as many because the earlier yr, according to a report by the United Nations Refugee Agency.
Not opening the doorways to migrants is “disgusting, sinful and prison,” the pope continued, underlining that usually they’re despatched again to migrant camps the place they’re “exploited and offered as slaves.” Francis urged believers to observe the imaginative and prescient of Scalabrini, for “a world and a Church with out limitations, the place nobody was a foreigner.”
Francis’ homily requested trustworthy about their dedication to welcoming others, leaving the query hanging.
“Allow us to ask ourselves if we’re actually communities actually open and inclusive of all,” he mentioned, including that a part of his synod on synodality — a large, three-year session of Catholic trustworthy within the church — focuses on reaching out and listening to those that are sometimes on the margins.
“I’m troubled after I see Christian communities that divide the world into the nice and the unhealthy, saints and sinners. This makes them really feel superior to others and excludes so many individuals whom God desires to embrace,” he mentioned, lamenting that the church “remains to be marred by many types of inequality and marginalization.”
The synod on the theme “For a Synodal Church: Communion, Participation and Mission” will conclude with a summit of bishops on the Vatican subsequent yr to debate the way forward for the church, making an allowance for the requires inclusion advocated by many lay trustworthy.
The pope then pivoted to “tormented Ukraine,” the place the battle with Russia has led to new migration flows of Ukrainian residents. He recalled the position performed by his predecessor Pope John XXIII in mediating dialogue between Russia and america in the course of the disaster on the Bay of Pigs in 1962, the place a nuclear battle threatened the world.
“Why don’t we be taught from historical past?” he requested. “Even at that second, there have been conflicts and big tensions, however the way in which of peace was chosen.”