Pope Francis: Mercy towards migrants
(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis has chosen as the theme for the 2016 World Day for Migrants and Refugees the theme: Migrants and refugees challenge us. The response of the Gospel of Mercy. A communique released by the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People said the choice of this theme fits in well within the context of the upcoming Jubilee Year of Mercy proclaimed by the Pope. It said the chosen theme wishes to underline two aspects: the first the dramatic situation of so many men, women and children people forced to flee their homes saying this is a reality that must challenge us and break the barrier of indifference that so often reigns. The second part of the theme stresses the response of the world and in particular of the Church to the plights of migrants. The communique said the Pope urges Christians to reflect during the upcoming Jubilee Year on works of corporal and spiritual mercy that include among them welcoming strangers.
When it comes to the local churches, the Pontifical Council gives proposals for how the 2016 World Day for Migrants and Refugees can be marked within the diocese and it suggests that migrants and refugees are also actively involved in these celebrations. The council also urges the local churches to increase awareness about the plights of migrants and refugees among the Christian community.