Pope hails the poor, homeless as 'unknown saints'

AP News
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Posted: Nov 01, 2014 1:37 PM
Pope hails the poor, homeless as 'unknown saints'

ROME (AP) — Pope Francis has paid tribute to what he calls the "unknown saints" — those who flee war, hunger and poverty, the jobless and the homeless.

Francis marked the Catholic Church's Nov. 1 All Saints Day by celebrating Mass and giving a homily Saturday in Rome's sprawling Verano cemetery.

He hailed those who are forced to flee their homes and villages to save their lives, risking hunger, illness and cold. He lamented that sometimes people regard these refugees, including hungry, ill children "as if they are of another species, not human."

Francis praised these suffering people as "unknown saints," sanctified through their distress.

Using his papacy to advocate for the poor, Francis said these people are pleading for peace, bread and work.