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Sunday, September 6, 2015

Pope Francis On Taking In Refugees In Europe: A Basis For An Alternative Approach To Christianity

As tens of thousands of refugees from the Middle East were seeking refuge in the E.U., Pope Francis “called on every parish, religious community, monastery and sanctuary in Europe to shelter refugees.”[1] It was not enough, he said, to tell them, “have courage, hang in there.”[2] Providing the Christian basis, he said that “the Gospel calls us to be close to the smallest and to those who have been abandoned.”[3] Jesus went to those who had been abandoned by the hegemonic Temple-centric Judaism of his day, and healed them. In the Gospel of Mark, it is the strangers rather than the disciples who understand his message. I submit that this approach to Christianity could serve as an alternative to the dominant one that applies Christianity to every issue.

Pope Francis making the appeal. (Riccardo De Luca/AP)

The complete essay is at "Pope Francis on the Refugees."

1. Alison Smale, “Pope Calls on All of Europe’s Catholics to Shelter Refugees,” The New York Times, September 6, 2015.
2. Ibid.
3. Ibid.