Talk to us

CathNews, the most frequently visited Catholic website in Australia, is your daily news service featuring Catholics and Catholicism from home and around the world, Mass on Demand and on line, prayer, meditation, reflections, opinion, and reviews. And, what's more - it's free!

Migrants trek toward the Darien Gap in Acandi, Colombia, which is one of the world’s most dangerous migration routes, on July 9, 2023 (OSV News/Adri Salido, Reuters)

In his message for the World Day of Migrants and Refugees, Pope Francis invites people to see migration as a sign of the times and as a symbol of the Church’s pilgrimage throughout history. Source: Vatican News.

“See in the migrants of our time, as in those of every age, a living image of God’s people on their way to the eternal homeland,” writes Pope Francis in his 2024 Message for the 110th World Day of Migrants and Refugees.

The World Day, celebrated annually on September 24, is a call to believers to show support and closeness to the millions of men, women and children who are forced to leave their homes. 

The current global estimate is that there were around 281 million international migrants in the world in 2020, which equates to 3.6 per cent of the global population, and that number continues to rise.

Pointing out that God not only walks with his people, but also within them, he invites everyone to walk in a “synodal” way – in the Church and in the world – in order to move forward on our own pilgrimage toward the heavenly homeland.

The message’s title, “God walks with His people,” immediately points to the synodal dimension the Pope constantly invites the Church and the people of God to live every day and in every moment.

The Pope calls people to recognise the Lord present in the millions of people who are forced to migrate due to conflict, persecution, poverty, and the climate crisis, “as a living image of God’s people on their way to the eternal homeland”.

“Their journeys of hope remind us that ‘our citizenship is in heaven, and it is from there that we are expecting a Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ’,” he says.

“Their journeys of hope remind us that our citizenship is in heaven.”


Pope Francis: An encounter with a migrant is an encounter with Christ (By Linda Bordoni, Vatican News)