Vatican City, Oct 26, 2010 / 18:06 pm
Pope Benedict XVI announced the theme of “One Human Family” as the message of the 97th World Day of Migrants and Refugees to be held in January. Echoed by other Vatican officials, the Pontiff stressed the importance of recognizing the “profound link between all human beings” and the need for the rights of all individuals to be protected.
"The World Day of Migrants and Refugees offers the whole Church an opportunity to reflect on a theme linked to the growing phenomenon of migration, to pray that hearts may open to Christian welcome and to the effort to increase in the world justice and charity, pillars on which to build an authentic and lasting peace,” wrote the Pontiff in his opening remarks on Oct. 26.
“All,” he continued, “belong to one family, migrants and the local populations that welcome them, and all have the same right to enjoy the goods of the earth whose destination is universal, as the social doctrine of the Church teaches. It is here that solidarity and sharing are founded.”
However, the Pope added, “States have the right to regulate migration flows and to defend their own frontiers, always guaranteeing the respect due to the dignity of each and every human person. Immigrants, moreover, have the duty to integrate into the host country, respecting its laws and its national identity.”