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Catholic Church in England and Wales commits to taking in refugees after Pope Francis' call

by Aaron James

Cardinal Vincent Nichols, the leader of Catholics in the two regions, has said in a statement that the Church "will respond to Pope Francis' challenge to be generous in supporting people who have been forced to flee their homes."

Premier contacted the Catholic Church's press office to confirm whether this meant it would be physically taking in refugees, with the Church confirming this was indeed the case.

It also said that it would be liasing with local councils in order to fulfil its promise, and that it was unable to determine how many refugees it would be taking in at this stage.

The move comes after Pope Francis said yesterday that he would take in two refugee families into the Vatican, and called on Christians and the rest of society to take in refugees as well if they could.

The pontiff said the Gospel calls us to help the tens of thousands of people fleeing war and hunger.

Cardinal Vincent Nichols said: "The Catholic Church in England and Wales will respond to Pope Francis' challenge to be generous in supporting people who have been forced to flee their homes.

"We urge government to respond positively to this crisis and to provide the necessary resources and funding to ensure the effective reception and long-term resettlement of these desperate people.

"We will work with both government and other responsible authorities to meet this grave challenge.

"We invite all Catholics to respond in prayer and in real, practical action. It is my hope to join the prayer vigil which is taking place outside Westminster Cathedral tomorrow night.

"Guidance will follow shortly on how the Catholic community in England and Wales can practically respond to this refugee crisis."

It has been reported that Britain will take in 10,000 migrants or more, however Prime Minister David Cameron has not confirmed this yet.

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