· Vatican City ·

Prefect of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development

Cardinal Michael Czerny

 Cardinal Michael Czerny  ING-011
17 March 2023

There have been many messages, themes, and challenges throughout [Jorge Mario Bergoglio’s] pontificate. How would you sum up this decade of his pastoral service and ministry?

I would sum it up in a few words, such as Good Samaritan, common home, Fratelli Tutti. These are not abstractions, they are concrete priorities everywhere; they are priorities for leaders, believers, and people of good will, for all those who care about human life and the future of the human family. [...]

One of the most symbolic moments [of this pontificate] came during the July 2013 visit to Lampedusa, Italy. Since then, the Pope has never ceased to draw the world’s attention to migration and the plight of people forced to leave their countries...

The theme of migration one could call a “sacrament” of Pope Francis’s magisterium. This issue, so concrete, so human and also so “sacred” given its great importance, is one the Pope has been effectively communicating to all the faithful and indeed everyone. The Pope makes it clear to everyone worldwide how fundamental the dignity of human life is and how essential to help our neighbours. He has made the phenomenon of migration relevant, within which is evident the presence of Jesus, the Holy Family in those who flee. To everyone he opens up the possibility of responding — as Christians and as men and women of goodwill — with his important teaching about how to respond: by welcoming, advocating, protecting and integrating.

What kind of wish would you make for Pope Francis?

More than a wish, it is my strong desire that he continue to receive the grace and the awareness of our enormous thanks, the gratitude of the whole world, for these ten years that have been changing us for the better.