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Pope Francis

Complete program of pope's trip to Fatima on May 12-13

March 20, 2017. The Vatican has published Pope Francis' program for his upcoming trip to Fatima.
Pope Francis

Pope Francis will travel to Egypt from 28 to 29 April 2017

March 18, 2017. In response to the invitation from the President of the Republic, the Bishops of the Catholic Church, His Holiness Pope Tawadros II and the Grand Imam of the Mosque of Al Azhar, Sheikh Ahmed Mohamed el-Tayyib, Pope Francis will make an Apostolic trip to the Arab Republic of Egypt from 28 to 29 April 2017, visiting the city of Cairo. The programme of the trip will be published shortly.
Pope Francis

Pope to meet with most powerful European leaders on March 24

March 3, 2017. On March 24 a historic meeting will take place between the pope and many of the most powerful heads of government throughout Europe. The meeting was announced by the Director of the Press Office of the Holy See, Greg Burke and will begin at 6 p.m. in the Sala Regia of the Apostolic Palace in the Vatican.

Refugees in Europe: See how the Jesuit Refugee Service is helping out

2015-09-13

The refugee crisis in Europe multiplied from one day to the next. Images of people rushing through train stations as they seek asylum,  have been seen around the world. For years now, groups like the Jesuit Refugee Service have been helping families like these, move forward. 

AMAYA VALCARCEL
Jesuit Refugee Service
"We provide access to education, also psychological help because many of these refugees have mental traumas from war. We also have a service for victims of torture and legal assistance to help them go through the asylum process.”

Amaya Valcarcel works in Rome's Jesuit Refugee Service. She says it's a misconception to describe these people as migrants seeking economic profit. First and foremost, she says, they are refugees. 

AMAYA VALCARCEL
Jesuit Refugee Service
"They are refugees who are escaping from armed conflicts, persecution and violence. They don't have any other alternatives, but to flee their hometown.” 

The journey through land and sea is dangerous. For some, even life threatening. Valcarcel says, European countries should give out humanitarian visas before, so that refugees can go from one point to the other, safely. 

Another critical point, she says, is having countries within the European Union commit to receiving a certain number of refugees, depending on their capabilities. 

AMAYA VALCARCEL
Jesuit Refugee Service
"Countries are closing their borders or they've decided they are not going to let people pass through. This is a violation of the 1951 Geneva Convention.” 

With offices in Syria and Afghanistan, the Jesuit Refugee Service, states the violence and the reach of ISIS is a real threat. Helping those in need is more than just and act of mercy, they say. At this point, it's a responsibility. 

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