How Pope Francis is spending his first days of vacation

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July might mean no official meetings for Pope Francis, but that did not keep him from spending one of his first days of summer vacation welcoming a group of migrants in Casa Santa Marta.

The group included two young people, one from Senegal and the other from Gambia, who had written books about their experience fleeing from Africa to Europe.

But this was not the first time some of these migrants met the Pope. Last year, Pato from Cameroon had a papal meeting. And after sharing his story, Pope Francis gave some advice about how to make hard decisions, even if no one else follows.

But the one who comes out to serve, he feels that so many do not follow him. You also feel that he is one who has not understood, is not understood. Do not be afraid. Go forth in fruitful solitude.

Another member of the group was Luca Casarini, who was also present at the Synod last year. He is the founder of Mediterranea Saving Humans, which is dedicated to helping migrants.

Founder, Mediterranea Saving Humans
The plight of migrants at sea—who are not migrants by choice—is that they're trying to escape the horror of Libya. I believe that we are nailing so many people to the cross right now and we have not yet realized that really that no one is saved alone.

The organization, Mediterranea, was created in 2018 out of the discontent over the thousands of migrants who have died in the Mediterranean with the closed-port policy.

In summer, the Vatican does not release an official schedule of Pope Francis' encounters. But it is typical that during these days, he has different meetings with people from around the world.


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