CHINESE IN ITALY: MIGRANTES, FIRST MEETING ON THE POPE’S INVITATION

Responding to Pope Benedict XVI’s appeal to celebrate 24th May as a day of prayer of the universal Church for the Church in China, and promoting missionary and pastoral work for Chinese immigrants. These are the aims of the National Office for the Pastoral of Migrants and Refugees of the Migrantes Foundation which convened the first meeting of Chinese in Italy to Rome for that day. Migrantes – explains a note –, because of the fast growth in the number of Chinese immigrants in Italy, is widely engaged in pastoral and evangelisation work for the Chinese, and, under its coordination, many Italian dioceses have set up Chinese Catholic communities. This work is still in embryo, but it is "a well-known fact that the number of Catholics in all communities is steadily growing, so that Chinese priests need to be appointed in some of them for their pastoral care", states the director of the office, Father Gianromano Gnesotto. It will be an opportunity – explains Father Gnesotto – to "get to know our brothers and sisters who live in Italy and a great opportunity to share with and mutually encourage our friends who live in the wide land of China: the sign of our obedience, communion and unity. We hope everyone will attend and joyfully support this initiative of ours".

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