After the Angelus:
Dear brothers and sisters, today we are celebrating World Day of Migrants and
Refugees, which this year is on the theme: “Towards an ever wider we ”. It is
necessary to walk together, without prejudice and without fear, beside those who
are most vulnerable: migrants, refugees, displaced persons, victims of human
trafficking, and the abandoned. We are called to build an ever more inclusive
world, that excludes no one.
I join with those, who are celebrating this Day in various parts of the world; I
greet the faithful gathered in Loreto for the initiative of the Italian Episcopal
Conference in aid of migrants and refugees. I greet and thank the various ethnic
communities present here in the Square with their flags; and I greet the
representatives of the Italian Caritas “apri ” project, as well as the Migrantes
Office of the Diocese of Rome and the Centro Astalli. Thank you all for your
And before leaving the Square, I invite you to go over to the monument over
there — where Cardinal Czerny is — the boat with the migrants, and to look
closely at the expressions of those people and grasp in that look the hope that
every migrant has, to start living again. Go over there and look at that
monument. Let us not close the doors to their hope.
I express my closeness and solidarity to those who were affected by the eruption
of the volcano on the island of La Palma, in the Canaries. I think in particular of
those who were forced to leave their homes. Let us pray to Our Lady, venerated
on that island as Nuestra Señora de las Nieves, for these people who have been
sorely tried, and for the rescuers.