The Pope has appealed to the entire European Church to take in migrant families.
Pope Francis’s plea yesterday came ahead of the upcoming Jubilee of Mercy and in response to the news that many refugees will enter Europe from the Middle East and Africa.
The pontiff ended his speech by praying that Mary would intercede in supporting all in their commitment to professing the faith.
He said: “I make an appeal to the parishes, to religious communities, to monasteries, and sanctuaries of all Europe to express the concreteness of the Gospel, and to welcome a family of refugees.
“Faced with the tragedy of tens of thousands of refugees fleeing death on account of war and hunger, and who are traveling toward a hope for life, the Gospel calls us to be ‘neighbors’ to the smallest and abandoned.
“The first thing Jesus does is bring that man who is far from the flock: he doesn’t want to give publicity to the gesture he is about to make, but neither does he want his word covered by the voices of the din and the gossip of the environment.”
Press attention to the refugee crisis has increased in recent days as thousands of migrants arrived in Germany and Austria.
High-profile stories this week have included the likes of German football champions Bayern Munich decision to set up a training camp for refugees.
In Britain coverage increased following a photo of a drowned Syrian toddler whose family had attempted to escape to Europe. The image of three-year-old Aylan Al-Kurdi with his mother and brother sparked a reaction from the public towards European leaders.
David Cameron said Britain wants refugees to avoid the risk of putting themselves in the hands of people traffickers.
On Friday, he said that Britain would take refugees directly from the camps in countries bordering Syria.