Can Pope Francis’ US Visit Shift Debate On Immigrants?
IBT | Sept 23, 2015
Gustavo Torres remembers the rush of hope he felt in the summer of 2013 when Pope Francis, then a newly minted pontiff, began speaking out against a “globalization of indifference” for the plight of Middle Eastern and African refugees desperately trying to reach European shores. For Torres, a Colombian-born immigrant living in the U.S., the pope’s words struck a potent chord.
“That was a very big indication that he was on our side,” he said.
Pope Francis this week is traveling for the first time in the United States, where he is widely expected to make remarks about immigration in an address to Congress Thursday. Torres, executive director of Casa de Maryland, an advocacy group for low-income immigrant communities, is part of a large contingent of activists who are pouring their hopes into the pope’s visit to kick off a kinder, gentler conversation about immigration reform in the United States.