Pope Francis urged Italians on Sunday to have more children while at the same time opening the country’s doors to more migrants, pleading they be “welcomed, accompanied, promoted and integrated.”
Speaking in southern Italy at the Catholic Church’s 27th National Eucharistic Congress that coincided with Italy’s national election, the pope touched on key domestic campaign issues.
These included immigration and the demographic decline of the national Italian population.
Both topics have previously been addressed by Francis with his encouragement of open borders a feature of many public statements.
So when will Pope Francis tear down his wicked Vatican Wall and embrace millions of migrants? And when will the Vatican let unvaccinated migrants in? https://t.co/eawkFWCPdG
— Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) September 27, 2021
AP reports Francis and his hosts both referred to the vote during the open-air Mass, though Italy’s bishops conference had earlier urged Italians to cast ballots in the eagerly watched election that could bring Italy its first right-populist coalition of anti-mass migration, eurosceptic parties since World War II.
At the end of the outdoor Mass in Matera, the 85-year-old pope spoke off the cuff asking Italians to have more children.
Pope Francis waves as he arrives in the popemobile car to attend the 27th National Eucharistic Congress on September 25, 2022 in Matera, southern Italy. ( CARLO HERMANN/AFP via Getty Images)
“I’d like to ask Italy: More births, more children,” he said, acknowledging Italy has one of the lowest birth rates in the world delivering a “demographic winter” the pope has previously touched on, as Breitbart News reported.
Francis also weighed in on a perennial issue in Italy, recalling Sunday coincided with the Catholic Church’s World Day of Migrants and Refugees.
Pope Francis Praises Multiculturalism: ‘Migrants Always Bring Riches’ https://t.co/URSYoR7CiP
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) April 7, 2019
Francis called for a future in which “God’s plan” is implemented, with migrants and victims of human trafficking living in peace and dignity, and for a more “inclusive and fraternal future.”
He added: “Immigrants are to be welcomed, accompanied, promoted and integrated.”