Shipwreck of Migrants Off the Coast of Senegal: The Pope’s Closeness and Grief

Pope Francis expressed his “closeness” and “grief” following the death of at least 140 people in the sinking of a boat of migrants off the north-western coast of Senegal.

Only some sixty people were rescued of the 200 passengers, deplored the International Organization of Migrants (IOM) on November 5, 2020.

In a message addressed to the Bishop of the diocese of Saint Louis, Monsignor Ernest Sambou, the Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin assured him that Pope Francis “associates himself to the families’ mourning, expressing to them his closeness and grief.”

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France: Following the Attacks, the Bishops Appeal for Respect

“There is no true freedom without respect and without fraternity,” said the Bishop of France in an appeal published on November 7, 2020, in the wake of the attacks. Everything is lawful but not everything is constructive, they stress.

Profoundly bruised by the Islamist attacks and more particularly by that of a teacher at Conflans-Sainte-Honorine and then three Catholics in a church of Nice, the Bishops of France, gathered in Plenary Assembly, condemned these crimes without reservations.

They recall Pope Francis’ strong statement in his encyclical “Brothers All”: “The Grand Imam Ahmad Al-Tayyeb and I myself stated firmly that religions never incite to war and never elicit sentiments of hatred, hostility, extremism or invite to violence or the spilling of blood.” (Fratelli Tutti, October 2020).

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