“The future of humanity passes through the social inclusion of migrants, peacebuilding, and social dialogue. The condition for building inclusion, justice, and peace is to ‘walk together.’”
The Astalli Center said in April that many refugees who have lived independently in Italy for years returned to the charity in 2020 with worries about unemployment, paying bills, monthly rent, and schooling for their children.
At the same time, the number of migrants arriving in Italy by sea tripled last year as the country battled the coronavirus pandemic.
Pope Francis visited the Astalli Center on Sept. 10, 2013, months after his election. In an address, he thanked staff for showing “that with acceptance and brotherhood it is possible to open a window on the future.”
In his Nov. 7 message, the pope said that in recent decades conflicts, nationalism, and populism had aggravated the plight of refugees. He criticized governments for relying on “the construction of walls and the return of migrants to unsafe places” to manage migration.
But he said that the courage and perseverance of refugees were inspiring.
He concluded his letter by asking Fr. Arrupe, who died in 1991 and whose cause of canonization officially opened in 2019, to watch over the Rome center and the whole Jesuit Refugee Service.