Pope Francis’ appeal should not sink into the sea along with the migrants

The Covid-19 pandemic is a terrible crisis, but other emergencies such as migrants dying in the Mediterranean Sea are equally important, say the Scalabrinian Sisters.

Vatican News English Africa Service

Sister Neusa de Fatima Mariano, Superior General of the Missionary Sisters of San Carlo Borromeo – Scalabrinians, has told the Church’s Agenzia Fides that Covid-19 is not the only emergency facing the world. She says violence, social and economic crises equally need the world’s attention and response. Sr. Mariano was reacting to Pope Francis’ remarks, made during last Sunday’s Regina Coeli.

Help that never came

Addressing the faithful gathered in St Peter’s Square for the recitation of the Regina Coeli prayer, Pope Francis turned his thoughts to the tragic loss of lives, once again, in the Mediterranean Sea. We ought to be ashamed, said the Pope, remembering the 130 shipwreck victims. In a heartfelt appeal, Pope Francis assured of his closeness to those people who “for two whole days begged in vain for help. Help that never came.” They are people, said the Pope. Human lives.

The pandemic teaches us solidarity

Sr. Mariano reiterated Pope Francis’ thoughts on the matter.

“We cannot look the other way thinking that the only emergency today is the Covid-19 pandemic. Violence, social and economic crises continue to occur daily in every corner of the planet. To witness, almost indifferently, another shipwreck in the Mediterranean, in a world that should be more supportive because it is engaged in the same battle against the pandemic, means having lost to globalization, the values of the identity of Europe. On this continent, many have always found space to realise their potential as persons,” said the Scalabrinian religious.

Humanitarian corridors

Sr Mariano added, “We join the heartfelt voice of the Pope: Strengthen humanitarian corridors, strengthen international cooperation networks, promote the strengthening of agreements with those who, by vocation and charisma, openly and freely support migration policies. We also address a thought for Nadia De Munari, the lay missionary brutally murdered with a machete in Peru. We offer our prayers for this climate of hatred that adds to the tragedies of the Mediterranean to stop. Let’s not let this appeal (of Pope Francis) sink along with the last 130 deaths,” the Superior General emphasised.