What did Pope Francis actually say on the crisis on the U.S.-Mexican border?

border-crisisYou simply cannot trust media outlets like the Huffington Post or CNN to faithfully transmit anything that Pope Francis says.

Thankfully, via Vatican Radio, we have the full and unedited statement by Pope Francis on the occasion of the “Mexico Holy See colloquium on human migration and development” dated on July 14, 2014, in which he addresses the crisis involving the migration of 57,000 unaccompanied minors that showed up in Texas, at the United States border with Mexico:

I would like to extend my greetings to the organizers, speakers, and participants in the “Mexico Holy See colloquium on human migration and development”.

Globalization is a phenomenon that challenges us, especially in one of its principal manifestations which is emigration. It is one of the “signs” of this time that we live in and that brings us back to the words of Jesus, “Why do you not know how to interpret the present time?” (Lk 12,57). Despite the large influx of migrants present in all continents and in almost all countries, migration is still seen as an emergency, or as a circumstantial and sporadic fact, while instead it has now become a hallmark of our society and a challenge.

It is a phenomenon that carries with it great promise and many challenges. Many people forced to emigrate suffer, and often, die tragically; many of their rights are violated, they are obliged to separate from their families and, unfortunately, continue to be the subject of racist and xenophobic attitudes.

Faced with this situation, I repeat what I have affirmed in this year’s Message for the World Day of Migrants and Refugees: “A change of attitude towards migrants and refugees is needed on the part of everyone, moving away from attitudes of defensiveness and fear, indifference and marginalization – all typical of a throwaway culture – towards attitudes based on a culture of encounter, the only culture capable of building a better, more just and fraternal world”.

I would also like to draw attention to the tens of thousands of children who migrate alone, unaccompanied, to escape poverty and violence: This is a category of migrants from Central America and Mexico itself who cross the border with the United States under extreme conditions and in pursuit of a hope that in most cases turns out to be vain. They are increasing day by day. This humanitarian emergency requires, as a first urgent measure, these children be welcomed and protected. These measures, however, will not be sufficient, unless they are accompanied by policies that inform people about the dangers of such a journey and, above all, that promote development in their countries of origin. Finally, this challenge demands the attention of the entire international community so that new forms of legal and secure migration may be adopted.

I wish every success to the laudable initiative of the Mexican government’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs in arranging a colloquium of study and reflection on the great challenge of migration and cordially impart my Apostolic Blessing to all those present.

Translation copyrighted by Vatican Radio. Reprinted with permission of Vatican Radio.


Categories:Immigration Pope Francis

  • Tom

    We need to support policies “that promote development in their countries of origin”.

    Low regulation, low taxes; strong protection for private property; strong protection of valid contracts, especially enforcing wage payments to the poor agreed upon by the rich.

    These poor unfortunate people were born to live in countries with lousy governments — so lousy, so inferior, that they feel they need to flee. Most of those terrible governments have been, since WW II, getting bigger, with higher taxes, and more regulations, yet without reducing much the real poverty of their poor.

    How many places need to follow Venezuela, Greece, Puerto Rico, Detroit, before all people of good will acknowledge that Good Intentions for Big Government result in Bad Results?

    • Vanessa of DC

      The Bad policies of big government result in bad results. Government in of itself is not bad! Right now the people in leadership (the majority party in both houses of government) are making bad policies. Policy that is aligned with big business and is not of the people.

  • John

    Let the Pope resolve the Church’s own problems with abusing children. Then let him release more of the Church’s wealth to charity. Then let him learn to keep his brilliant ideas on other countries problems to himself.

    • Vanessa of DC

      At least he’s spending his time trying to resolve some problems and not sitting around badmouthing what others are trying to do. What have you done for society lately?



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