Following the call of Pope Francis during his Angelus message this past September 6, 2015, the Most Reverend Paul-André Durocher, Archbishop of Gatineau and President of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, has released an open letter to Canadian Catholics on how all the members of the Church can respond to the refugee crisis. In his letter, Archbishop Durocher proposed seven ways Catholics can respond, including diocesan or parish sponsorships of refugees as well as donations toward the work of Canadian Catholic “aid and development agencies which do outstanding international work and are deeply involved in assisting Syrian and other refugees and displaced persons.” Also, the Archdiocese of Toronto announced the launch of “Project Hope“, a special emergency appeal to respond to the tragic situation of refugees. For further information, please click here.
USCCB Calls for Welcoming of Refugees Fleeing Syria
Catholics in the United States, as well as all people of good will, should express openness and welcome to refugees fleeing Syria and elsewhere in order to survive, said the president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops in a statement, September 10. Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, Kentucky, issued the call on the heels of Pope Francis’ appeal, September 6, that every Catholic parish in Europe house a refugee family.
“The Catholic Church in the United States—with nearly 100 Catholic Charities agencies and hundreds of parishes assisting refugees to this country each year, and with Catholic Relief Services providing humanitarian aid to refugees in the Middle East and Europe—stands ready to help in this effort,” wrote Archbishop Kurtz.
Archbishop Kurtz expressed his solidarity with the pope, the bishops of Syria, the Middle East, and Europe, “and all people who have responded to this humanitarian crisis with charity and compassion.” He also encouraged the U.S. government “to assist more robustly the nations of Europe and the Middle East in protecting and supporting these refugees and in helping to end this horrific conflict, so refugees may return home in safety.