Kurz, who served as foreign minister at the height of the European migrant and refugee crisis in 2015-2016, has insisted that the current E.U. migrant/refugee quota will not solve the problem, and has urged that borders be closed and migrants without the right to asylum be rejected.
According to a March 5 Vatican communique on the meeting, discussion between the two also touched on the need to promote the common good, especially in regards to the most vulnerable sectors of society, and the need to promote solidarity.
In this regard, protection of life and the family was also discussed, as well as current international issues such as promoting peace and nuclear disarmament.
Both the positive relationship between the Holy See and Austria, as well as the latter's contribution to the European Union, were also discussed.
Francis and Kurz exchanged a few words among themselves in German both at the beginning and end of the meeting, as the Pope himself has a limited capacity in the language.
They then exchanged gifts, with the chancellor giving Francis a type of certificate commemorating the anniversary of Silent Night. The Pope, on his part, gave Kurz a medal depicting St. Michael killing the demon of war, as well as copies of his apostolic exhortation Evangelii Gaudium, his environmental encyclical Laudato Si, and his post-synodal apostolic exhortation Amoris Laetitia.
Pope Francis also gave the chancellor a copy of this year's message for peace, which he signed and presented to Kurz after greeting the delegation.
Kurz's visit Monday marks the second official visit he has made to the Vatican, the first being a 2015 meeting while still foreign minister. In December, in his former role as Chairman-in-Office for OSCE, he met with Vatican Secretary for Relations with States, Archbishop Paul Gallagher.
After his meeting with the Pope, Kurz had a private discussion with Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin, and Under-Secretary for Relations with States Msgr. Antoine Camilleri, who was recently named a nuncio by Pope Francis.
(Story cotinues below)
Subscribe to our daily newsletter
At Catholic News Agency, our team is committed to reporting the truth with courage, integrity, and fidelity to our faith. We provide news about the Church and the world, as seen through the teachings of the Catholic Church. When you subscribe to the CNA UPDATE, we'll send you a daily email with links to the news you need and, occasionally, breaking news.
As part of this free service you may receive occasional offers from us at EWTN News and EWTN. We won't rent or sell your information, and you can unsubscribe at any time.