Pope urges U.S. Catholics to keep enthusiasm, welcome newcomers

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September 28, 2015

Pope Francis looks out a window after boarding an American Airlines jetliner at Philadelphia International Airport Sept. 27 for his return to Rome following a six-day apostolic visit to the U.S. (CNS photo/Gregory A. Shemitz) See POPE-VOLUNTEERS-FAREWELL Sept. 28, 2015.

Pope Francis looks out a window after boarding an American Airlines jetliner at Philadelphia International Airport Sept. 27 for his return to Rome following a six-day apostolic visit to the U.S. (CNS photo/Gregory A. Shemitz)

PHILADELPHIA (CNS) — Pope Francis ended his trip to the United States with a call for Catholics to keep the enthusiasm of the visit, while continuing to welcome newcomers and care for creation.

“Do not let your enthusiasm for Jesus, his church, our families, and the broader family of society run dry,” Pope Francis said at Philadelphia International Airport, prior to flying back to Rome. “I pray that our days of prayer and reflection on the importance of the family for a healthy society will inspire families to continue to strive for holiness and to see the church as their constant companion, whatever the challenges they may face.”

In just over five full days in the U.S., Pope Francis reaffirmed the importance of church and family life, pleaded for inclusive attitudes toward immigrants, reiterated the right of religious freedom and called for action on climate change and care for creation.

Read more in The Visitor…