Pope Francis visits refugees at Centro Astalli (JRS Italy) in Rome
20 September 2013

Pope Francis meets with people at Centro Astalli , Rome (Photograph: Alessia Giuliani, JRS)
The Pope was welcomed by refugees living in the four JRS reception centres in Rome, those who study in the JRS Italian language school, beneficiaries of social, legal and health assistance projects, as well as JRS staff and volunteers.

After the visit, which was closed to the public, JRS Italy Director, Giovanni La Manna SJ, and the Director of the Holy See Press Office, Federico Lombardi SJ, held a press briefing  which was attended by JRS International Director, Peter Balleis SJ, and a number of refugee participants.

Earlier in the afternoon, Pope Francis met refugees at JRS Italy during the normal operating hours of the JRS soup kitchen when approximately 400 asylum seekers and refugees come to the centre to receive a hot meal. He greeted the refugees and personally met with a few of them.

The Pope was welcomed by refugees living in the four JRS reception centres in Rome, those who study in the JRS Italian language school, beneficiaries of social, legal and health assistance projects, as well as JRS staff and volunteers.

Pope Francis also visited Chiesa del Gesù, a powerfully symbolic place for the Jesuit Refugee Service, where JRS founder, Fr Pedro Arrupe, is buried.







Press Contact Information
Philip Amaral
europe.advocacy@jrs.net
+32 2 250 32 27