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Pope seeks end to discrimination against migrants


Pope Benedict XVI has called on Christians to shun all forms of discrimination and welcome the migrants in their midst.

Marking the Vatican's celebration of World Day for Migrants and Refugees on Sunday, the Holy Father called on people to recognise the benefits of migration and overcome "every form of discrimination, injustice and disdain for the human person, because each person is an image of God."

Catholic News Service reports that, while addressing visitors in St. Peter's Square after reciting the midday Angelus prayer, the pope said the movement of people is a "sign of the times."

While the movement may be voluntary or forced, legal or clandestine, motivated by work or study, Pope Benedict said, the arrival of newcomers from far away can lead to a knowledge of and respect for ethnic and cultural differences.

Pope Benedict expressed hope that Catholics would help their communities overcome "difficulties of acceptance and integration" as they welcome migrants and refugees.

In his main Angelus talk, Pope Benedict focused on the Sunday Gospel reading in which Jesus invites Andrew and John to follow him, telling them, "Come and see."

The pope said Jesus' words offer guidance for the new year, which should be "a time in which we renew our spiritual journey with Jesus in the joy of seeking him and finding him always."

"The truest joy" people can have comes from meeting, following, knowing and loving Jesus, the pope said.

SOURCE
Pope asks Christians to end discrimination against migrants (Catholic News Service 16/1/06)

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17 Jan 2006