Pope says Christians should give priority attention to migrants

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Appealing on behalf of the world’s migrants, Pope Benedict XVI said Christians should put their faith into action and give priority attention to refugees and immigrants. The pope said St. Paul — a “missionary to migrants” — should inspire Christians to show solidarity with the diverse world of today’s migrants, including the “victims of modern forms of slavery” and human trafficking. The pope made the comments in his annual message for the World Day for Migrants and Refugees, which will be celebrated Jan. 18. The papal text was released at the Vatican Oct. 8. The pope’s theme, “St. Paul: Migrant, Apostle of the Peoples,” echoed the current jubilee year dedicated to the 2,000th anniversary of the saint’s birth. Traveling far and wide, St. Paul made himself an ambassador-at-large for Christ and a “migrant by vocation,” the pope said. In doing so, the saint understood the hardships of migrants and the importance of taking the Gospel to the most diverse populations, the pope said.

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