Aline Thuller, Caritas’ coordinator for refugees in the Archdiocese of Rio de Janeiro, said the archdiocese received approximately 40 asylum requests from pilgrims from Pakistan, Sierra Leone and Congo. Thuller said two parishes in Rio are providing housing for these asylum seekers.
The Archdiocese of Sao Paulo reported that at least 12 pilgrims — including five Pakistani nationals — who attended World Youth Day have approached the archdiocese to ask for help in staying in the country.
Larissa Leite, who works for Caritas in Sao Paulo, said the five Pakistanis stated they felt a strong religious persecution in their home country and wished to remain in Brazil.
As with all who seek asylum in Brazil, the pilgrims will have their cases analyzed by the National Committee for Refugees, an agency of the Justice Ministry.
“As soon as they apply for asylum status, we are able to help them get work permits, national registry numbers and provide them with Portuguese classes while they wait for their case to be reviewed,” said Thuller.
Almost 3 million people attended World Youth Day in Rio July 23-28. The event was Pope Francis’ first international trip after being elected pope.
Win free tickets, help support CatholicPhilly.com
CatholicPhilly.com often partners with our region's top cultural venues. During this two-week period, you can benefit by our association with The Franklin Institute in Philadelphia.
Make a donation of any amount during this period and you will receive two general admission tickets to Philadelphia's premier educational museum -- that's a $60 value.
Use our secure credit card form by clicking the link below. That will enable us to contact you so we can send the tickets, which are valid to September 2018.
Your donation helps us to provide high-quality coverage of the local Catholic communities we primarily serve, while also distributing national and world news of interest to Catholics, plus the orthodox teachings of the Catholic faith. Your gift gift of $40, $50, $100, or more will strengthen the fabric of our entire Catholic community.
Make your donation by credit card here: