Pope Francis arrived the afternoon of Monday, June 19, 2017, in the Basilica of Saint John Lateran, where he opened the annual Congress of the Diocese of Rome.
Shortly before entering Rome’s cathedral, he went to the living room of the building adjacent to the church, where he met with some 30 immigrants housed by the parishes of religious institutes of his diocese.
The Pontiff spoke with some of the children, who had made some posters, and with their parents.
On different occasions the Successor of Peter has reiterated his appeal to religious institutes to receive immigrants and refugees fleeing from war and violence. The first time he did so was on Sept. 6, 2015 during the Angelus. Since then, 38 parish communities and religious institutes have opened their doors to house immigrants.
Also since that day, Caritas-Rome has promoted two projects of general reception: “I Was a Stranger and You Welcomed Me” and “Pro Roof: Sheltered in my Home,” to create opportunities of hospitality for asylum seekers and refugees, in parishes, Religious Institutes and Roman families.