Pope slams Europe’s treatment of migrants

POpe.jpg

Rome—Pope Francis decried what he called Europe’s “indifferent and anaesthetized conscience” over migrants, during Good Friday prayers in Rome during which he also slammed pedophile priests, arms dealers and fundamentalists.
Tens of thousands of Catholic faithful gathered for the service, many clutching candles in the imposing surrounds of the city’s famous Colosseum, where thousands of Christians are believed to have been killed in Roman times.
“O Cross of Christ, today we see you in the Mediterranean and Aegean Seas which have become insatiable cemeteries, reflections of our indifferent and anaesthetized conscience,” the 79-year old pontiff said, referring to the thousands who set off in unseaworthy boats to reach Greece and the rest of Europe.
Pope Francis delivers his message during the Via Crucis (Way of the Cross) torchlight procession on Good Friday in front of Rome’s Colosseum, Friday, March 25, 2016. (AP)
Francis has long called for the global community to open its doors to refugees and fight xenophobia — appeals which have intensified since a controversial deal between Europe and Turkey to expel migrants arriving in Greece.
The Argentine pope did not spare his own Church, fiercely denouncing pedophile priests whom he described as those “unfaithful ministers who, instead of stripping themselves of their own vain ambitions, divest even the innocent of their dignity”.
The Roman Catholic Church continues to be dogged by cases of predatory priests and past cover-ups. Just this month a French cardinal faced calls to resign over allegations he promoted a cleric who had a previous conviction for sexual abuse. In the wake of this week’s deadly attacks in Brussels, Francis slammed “terrorist acts committed by followers of some religions which profane the name of God and which use the holy name to justify their unprecedented violence”. The pope added it was “arms dealers who feed the cauldron of war with the innocent blood of our brothers and sisters” and raged against “traitors who, for thirty pieces of silver, would consign anyone to death”.
‘Egotistical and hypocritical society’: Francis also evoked the expressions on the faces of children fleeing war “who often only find death and many Pilates who wash their hands” – a reference to Pontius Pilate, who, according to Christian tradition, said he was bowing to public demand in ordering Jesus’s crucifixion, in a bid to shrug off personal responsibility.
In his wide-ranging diatribe, the head of the Roman Catholic Church lashed out at persecutors of Christians in particular, lamenting “our sisters and brothers killed, burned alive, throats slit and decapitated by barbarous blades amid cowardly silence”.—AFP

Share this post

PinIt
    scroll to top