Jeb Bush said yesterday he would stop using the term "anchor babies" if someone showed him a better one. Babies would do for starters. As the GOP candidates sink deeper into the swamp, let's listen to Pope Francis at Lampedusa - a small island between Sicily and Malta to which many have fled from north Africa.-gwc
8 July 2013: Visit to Lampedusa - Holy Mass in the "Arena" sports camp | Francis
Immigrants dying at sea, in boats which were vehicles of hope and became vehicles of death. That is how the headlines put it. When I first heard of this tragedy a few weeks ago, and realized that it happens all too frequently, it has constantly come back to me like a painful thorn in my heart. So I felt that I had to come here today, to pray and to offer a sign of my closeness, but also to challenge our consciences lest this tragedy be repeated. Please, let it not be repeated! First, however, I want to say a word of heartfelt gratitude and encouragement to you, the people of Lampedusa and Linosa, and to the various associations, volunteers and security personnel who continue to attend to the needs of people journeying towards a better future. You are so few, and yet you offer an example of solidarity! Thank you! I also thank Archbishop Francesco Montenegro for all his help, his efforts and his close pastoral care. I offer a cordial greeting to Mayor Giusi Nicolini: thank you so much for what you have done and are doing. I also think with affection of those Muslim immigrants who this evening begin the fast of Ramadan, which I trust will bear abundant spiritual fruit. The Church is at your side as you seek a more dignified life for yourselves and your families. To all of you: o’scià!
This morning, in the light of God’s word which has just been proclaimed, I wish to offer some thoughts meant to challenge people’s consciences and lead them to reflection and a concrete change of heart.