Pope Francis has said the Catholic Church's missionary work in today's era must include reaching out to countries in Europe that have closed their borders to migrants and refugees, hoping to convince their people to open their hearts to those in need.
Dhaka, Bangladesh: For the first time on his six-day tour of Myanmar and Bangladesh, Pope Francis spoke directly about the plight of some 600,000 Rohingya Muslims who have fled to Bangladesh after facing persecution in Myanmar, praising "the spirit of generosity and solidarity" with which Bangladesh has taken in the refugees.
Yangon, Myanmar: Pope Francis called on the leaders of Myanmar's Buddhist clergy Nov. 29 to help the Buddhist majority nation, which is facing international outcry over its persecution of 600,000 minority Rohingya Muslims, "surmount all forms of misunderstanding, intolerance, prejudice and hatred."
Naypyidaw, Myanmar: Pope Francis attempted to sidestep a diplomatic minefield in meetings with Myanmar's political leaders Nov. 28, declining to specifically name the majority Buddhist nation's ongoing persecution of a minority Rohingya Muslim population but also calling on the quasi-democratic state to respect the rights of all ethnic groups.
Pope Francis has become the first pontiff to travel to Myanmar, landing here Nov. 27 for a three-day visit as the majority Buddhist nation is facing international outcry over its persecution of a minority Rohingya Muslim population.
Pope Francis will meet the head of Myanmar’s armed forces during his trip to the country next week, in a last-minute addition to a visit that comes as global attention has been drawn to the Myanmar military's persecution of hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims.
In Myanmar, Pope Francis risks either compromising his moral authority or putting in danger the Christians of that country. I have great admiration for the pope and his abilities, but someone should have talked him out of making this trip.