“The Gospel teaches us to help those who live in need, and the first need is that of lodging,” said Monsignor Konrad Krajewski, the Pope’s Almoner. He has put his apartment in the Vatican at the disposal of migrants fleeing from war-torn regions, reported Vatican Radio in Brazilian Portuguese. He himself, after months of work, sleeps in his office.
It is a “natural and spontaneous” gesture, but has nothing of the heroic,” clarified Monsignor Krajewski, who has responded to Pope Francis’ appeal, during the Angelus of September 6, 2015, to receive in each parish or Religious Community at least one refugee from Syria or from North Africa fleeing from war and hunger.
Monsignor Krajewski is giving hospitality to refugees for as long as necessary until they find definitive lodging. “A few weeks ago. Other families arrived and – a lovely thing – for the first time a beautiful little girl was born in my house and, I confess, I feel a bit like a grandfather, an uncle. It’s life that continues, a gift of God,” he said.
In April of 2016, Pope Francis himself brought three refugee families to Rome, from the refugee camp in the Greek Island of Lesbos, they were received first in Saint Anne’s parish in the Vatican and later by Sant’Egidio Community.
Last June 13, the Pope published his first message for the World Day of the Poor (November 19, 2017), suggesting to the baptized and Communities concrete gestures on this occasion. He suggested receiving the poor at one’s table: “Let us not love in words, but in deeds,” he wrote.