Filipino Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle has appealed for compassion for people who have been forced to migrate because of poverty and conflict around the world. "Many of these forced migrants become victims of human trafficking and forced labor, the new forms of slavery," Cardinal Tagle, Archbishop of Manila said in his homily to mark National Migrants Sunday, Feb. 14. Most migrants leave their homes because of job opportunities in other places, he said. "The whole world is being challenged by this phenomenon. Where is humanity? Where is the human heart? Where do we find mercy and compassion? Where?" the prelate asked as he challenged Catholics "to be merciful to migrants and refugees" during the Year of Mercy.
Pope Francis declared the "Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy" in December last year until November 2016 as a period for remission of sins and universal pardon focusing particularly on God's forgiveness and mercy. "In a decent society, no one especially the most vulnerable should be taken advantage of," said Cardinal Tagle. "Right now, the most vulnerable in our world are the migrants, the forced migrants and refugees," he added. The prelate reminded Catholics to show mercy by respecting migrants and not treating them as objects. "To people who are facing migrants at airports, piers, those who are handling their employment papers ... we are appealing to you to be merciful, be respectful," said Cardinal Tagle. The cardinal urged Filipinos to take care of migrants, the foreigners in the country.
"Don't think that all foreigners who come here are millionaires. There are also those who are vulnerable and prone to abuses," Cardinal Tagle said. "See Jesus in every refugee," he said. (Source: UCAN)