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Tuesday, July 15, 2014


Vatican City, 15 July 2014 (VIS) – Yesterday Pope Francis sent a message to the organisers, speakers and participants in the “Mexico/Holy See Colloquium on Migration and Development”, which was read during the inaugural session of the event by Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin. In the text, the Pontiff urges the international community to promote the adoption of new forms of legal and safe migration and called for protection and a suitable reception for the many children who migrate cross the border with the United States unaccompanied. He also highlights the need for policies to inform potential migrants of the dangers of such a journey and above all, for initiatives to promote development in their countries of origin.

“Globalisation 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?'. 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 marginalisation – 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”.


Vatican City, 15 July 2014 (VIS) – Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin spoke at yesterday's meeting between Mexico and the Holy See dedicated to “international migration and development”, attended also by the foreign ministers of Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, on the theme of the responsibility of the parties involved in the phases of departure, transit and arrival of migrants. The following are extensive extracts from his address, given in Spanish.

“The great contribution of Christianity to humanity, then, with the maturing of the times, will be recognised for the enlightenment that universal fraternity is a political category. Reason enlightened by faith joyfully shows that the human family are all children of the same Father. ... In a radical way, Christianity has stated from the very beginning that we are all free, we are all equal, we are all brothers. As a result, the dignity of the person derives not from their economic situation, political affiliation, level of education, immigration status or religious belief. Every human being, for the very fact of being a person, possesses a dignity that deserves to be treated with the utmost respect.

“Every day we receive further news of the huge number of people in the world who are forced to leave behind their homeland on account of tragic situations of suffering and pain. The causes are always the same: violation of the most elementary human rights, violence, lack of security, wars, unemployment and poverty. … In their attempt to arrive in a promised land where it is possible to lead a dignified life, thousands of people experience hunger, humiliation, violations of their dignity, sometimes torture, and some die amid the indifference of many. It is astonishing to see that, in the twenty-first century, there are victims of human trafficking, forced to work in conditions of semi-slavery or sexually abused; there are those who fall into the clutches of criminal bands who operate at a transnational level, often with impunity on account of corruption and certain collusion. The issue before us today, human mobility in today's world, is entrenched in this world of pain to which no-one can remain indifferent, especially the Church. It is the greatest movement of people, including entire populations, of all time.

“I think I can say with reason that in our globalised world, progress is not achieved only with a greater flow of capital, goods and information. An increase in the commercial and financial exchange between nations does not automatically lead to an improvement in the living standards of the population, nor does it automatically generate more wealth. In this regard, we note that nations, especially those that are more economically and socially advanced, owe their development largely to migrants. ... Those societies in which legal immigrants are not openly welcomed, but are instead treated with prejudice, as dangerous or harmful subjects, show themselves to be weak and unprepared for the challenges of the coming decades. By contrast, those that are able to see newcomers as generators of wealth, especially of a human and cultural nature, therefore know how to appropriately welcome them; those societies that make consistent efforts to integrate immigrants, offer an unequivocal message of solidity and guarantees to the entire international community, which can generate further progress.

“It is certain that human mobility and its impact on development are two of the most complex social phenomena, difficult to resolve without a general spirit of trust. On the one hand, immigrants must seek to integrate in the country that receives them, respecting its laws and national identity. On the other, the State also has the duty of defending its borders, without ever forgetting the importance of respect for human righs and the duty of solidarity. It is clear that the phenomenon of migration cannot be resolved solely by legislative measures or by adopting public policies, good though they may be, and far less so solely through the deployment of the forces of security and order. The solution to the problem of migration requires a profound cultural and social conversion that enables a closed culture to transform into a 'culture of welcome and encounter'.

“In this context, the Church has always been, and will continue to be, a loyal collaborator. ... By definition, being Catholic means being universal and transnational. Its message is not confined to the private lives of the faithful, but instead seeks conversion, expanding and reaching towards paths of culture and social justice, since it is not possible to define oneself as Christian and then turn one's back on justice and fraternity, also with non-believers. Furthermore, the Holy See, the central government of the universal Church, is a subject with full sovereignty in international law and has full legal personality. ... Aided by Pontifical Representatives, the Holy See participates in the most varied political forums with the aim of ensuring that universal human rights are fully protected with respect for the ethical and moral principles that shape social life. The Church will always support, at national and international level, any initiative for the adoption of joint policies.

“In relation to the phenomenon of migration, we urgently need to overcome atavistic fears and to establish common strategies at sub-regional, regional and worldwide levels to include all sectors of society. Let us think, for example, of the United States of America, whose administration has in recent weeks published data referring to the migratory flow of children who cross borders unaccompanied by adults. The number grows exponentially day by day. Whether they are journeying because of poverty, violence or in the hope of reuniting with families on the other side of the border, it is urgent to protect and help them, as their weakness is greater and, defenceless, they are vulnerable to all forms of abuse and misfortune. Politics is the art of the possible. Let us make possible what seems impossible; let us be ambitious in facing up to challenges. Let us not be discouraged by apparent failures.”


Vatican City, 15 July 2014 (VIS) – The Holy Father has:

- accepted the resignation from the pastoral care of the diocese of Karaganda, Kazakhstan, presented by Bishop Janusz Wieslaw Kaleta, in accordance with canon 401 para. 2 of the Code of Canon Law.

- appointed Msgr. Giuseppe Satriano as archbishop of Rossano-Cariati (area 1,415, population 139,400, Catholics 136,900, priests 87, permanent deacons 2, religious 105), Italy. The bishop-elect was born in Brindisi, Italy in 1960 and ordained a priest in 1985. He holds a licentiate in bioethics from the “Regina Apostolurum” Institute in Rome, and has served in a number of pastoral roles, including: spiritual father and subsequently rector of the diocesan seminary of Ostuni; vicar of the parish of “Maria SS. Annunziati” in Ostuni; and priest “fidei donum” in Kenya-Marsabit, and canon of the Cathedral chapter. He is currently vicar general of the archdiocese and episcopal vicar for the clergy and for consecrated life.

- appointed Msgr. Wojciech Zaluski, nunciature advisor, as apostolic nuncio in Burundi, at the same time elevating him to the dignity of archbishop. Msgr. Zaluski was born in Zaluski-Lipnewo, Poland in 1960 and ordained a priest in 1985. He holds a degree in canon law and has served in the diplomatic service of the Holy See since 1989, in the apostolic nunciatures of Burundi, Malta, Albania, Zambia, Sri Lanka, Georgia, Ukraine, Philippines, and Guatemala.

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