VATICAN CITY, May 28, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – On Monday, May 27, the day after the European Union parliamentary elections ended, Pope Francis released his World Day of Migrants address. However, according to the Vatican’s Arabic, German, and original English translations, the document was signed on April 30, 2019.
This adds weight to speculation that Pope Francis timed the release, which condemns even unconscious racism, to coincide with the elections so that his address would be seen as a rebuke to Europeans who voted for nationalist parties that oppose mass migration.
Quoting two of his own recent homilies, the pontiff condemned an attitude towards migration conditioned by “fear.”
“Take courage, it is I, do not be afraid! (Mt 14:27). It is not just about migrants: it is also about our fears. The signs of meanness we see around us heighten our fear of ‘the other,’ the unknown, the marginalized, the foreigner…We see this today in particular, faced with the arrival of migrants and refugees knocking on our door in search of protection, security and a better future,” he wrote.
“To some extent, the fear is legitimate, also because the preparation for this encounter is lacking (Homily in Sacrofano, 15 February 2019)…But the problem is not that we have doubts and fears. The problem is when they condition our way of thinking and acting to the point of making us intolerant, closed and perhaps even – without realizing it – racist,” he continued.
“In this way, fear deprives us of the desire and the ability to encounter the other, the person different from myself; it deprives me of an opportunity to encounter the Lord (cf. Homily at Mass for the World Day of Migrants and Refugees, 14 January 2018).”
Pope Francis targeted what he called “the most economically advanced societies,” saying that they are “witnessing a growing trend towards extreme individualism” which is combined with a “utilitarian mentality” and “reinforced by the media.”
“In this scenario, migrants, refugees, displaced persons and victims of trafficking have become emblems of exclusion. In addition to the hardships that their condition entails, they are often looked down upon and considered the source of all society’s ills,” he wrote.
But at the same time, the pontiff decried the West’s acceptance of the best and brightest of the world’s migrants, saying, “Developing countries continue to be drained of their best natural and human resources for the benefit of a few privileged markets.”
The pontiff predicted that rich societies’ retreat before “throw-away” culture will lead to a “moral decline” in these countries, and even marginalize and exclude “anyone who does not fall within the accepted norms of physical, mental and social well-being.”
Pope Francis did not refer to the millions of unborn lives, particularly those belonging to disabled babies, which have been lost thanks to Europe’s 50-year scourge of legal abortion. In western Europe, legal abortion followed the moral decay of the sexual revolution.
Sustainable development in the countries migrants are fleeing came second to the pontiff’s assumption that “the most economically advanced societies” must take in migrants.
“Dear brothers and sisters, our response to the challenges posed by contemporary migration can be summed up in four verbs: welcome, protect, promote and integrate,” he wrote.
But at the same time, Francis said that this program should include anyone “living in the existential peripheries, who need to be welcomed, protected, promoted and integrated.”
“If we put those four verbs into practice, we will help build the city of God and man,” he wrote.
“We will promote the integral human development of all people. We will also help the world community to come closer to the goals of sustainable development that it has set for itself and that, lacking such an approach, will prove difficult to achieve.”
The success of conservative, nationalist or patriotic, and anti-illegal immigration parties in the European Parliamentary elections were pronounced in Italy, Hungary, Poland, France, Belgium, Austria, Bulgaria, the United Kingdom, and Slovenia. In the European Parliament, the center-right was diminished as conservative-minded voters threw their support behind populists and nationalists. However, according to a chart produced by the BBC, there was a slight list to the left in the European Parliament overall, as other voters opted for liberals and, most dramatically in Germany, environmentally conscious “Green” parties.
The 2019 EU parliamentary elections, which took place between May 23 and May 26, followed four years of crisis-level illegal mass migration into Europe over the sea from North Africa, a phenomenon in which thousands of trafficked people have drowned. Some European nations, mindful of a rise in Islamic terrorism in Europe and other acts of violence linked to migration, have strongly resisted calls to embrace multiculturalism and accept large numbers of migrants.
In a recent lecture on the virtues of filial piety and patriotism, Cardinal Raymond Burke expressed his opinion that the resisting of large-scale Islamic migration to majority-Christian countries was a “responsible exercise of one’s patriotism.”
The 105th World Day of Migrants and Refugees will fall on September 29, 2019.