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Pope Francis Talks about Climate Change in Washington D.C.

There is no better endorsement for President Obama’s climate agenda than someone who is the source of immense of moral authority, Pope Francis. On the first day of his visit to America, the Pope called for further action on climate change. He said that it is now a critical moment of history and the problem should not be left to the future generation to solve.

Pope Francis reminded the people that they have a sacred obligation to protect the planet. Making a very rare speech in English to thousands of people gathered at the White House, the Pope praised the President for his recent proposals aimed at tackling the problems of air pollution. The Pope also made a strong pitch to battle climate change with specific reference to the President’s clean air initiative.

The environmental issue is a divisive one in US politics so that one Republican congressman boycotted the Pope’s speech in Congress due to the pontiff’s stance. All the Republican presidential candidates were against the action to tackle climate change because it will hurt the US economy.

The morning begun for Pope Francis as he emerged from the Apostolic Nunciature, the Holy See’s equivalent for an embassy. In his traditional white cassock, Pope Francis spent the first few minutes greeting well-wishers who were gathered behind the fence of the diplomatic complex. Afterwards, the Pope boarded a modest hatchback trailed by a convoy composed of large security vehicles. As they made their way to the White House, Washington streets were purposely cleared of traffic for the occasion.

At the White House, large crowds assembled at the South Lawn to get a glimpse of the pope. Approximately, 11,000 tickets were issued but the crowd was certainly more than that. The Pope was offered one of the most rare and respectful diplomatic ceremony that the US government provides visiting dignitaries. Following the military color guard and the playing of the National Anthems, President Obama welcomed the Pope with a brief remark.

After a private meeting with the US President, the Pope rode the specially outfitted jeep that was called pope mobile and greeted the crowd that lined the streets of Washington.

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A Heartwarming Story of a Syrian Refugee

Amidst the refugees crisis that is now becoming a big problem for European Union member nations is a beautiful and heartwarming story. Usama Abdul Mohsen, a 52-year old father and his family were forced to flee Al-Raqqa for Turkey because work was nowhere to be found.

Abdul Mohsen set off for Europe with his son Zaid wrapped around his chest when they reached the Serbian border. Father and son were caught by the camera being tripped by a Hungarian journalist who was later identified as Petra Laszio. Father and son soon became the symbol of Europe’s humanitarian crisis but he is now being greeted like a celebrity in Spain.

Usama Abdul Mohsen who is a Syrian professional soccer coach arrived in Spain as a celebrity. His arrival was broadcasted over live television so that almost everyone knew about his story. Abdul Mohsen already has an apartment and the promise of a new job courtesy of CENAFE soccer academy. During a Real Madrid match, Mohsen’s 7-year old son Zaid was invited on the field by none other than the soccer superstar Cristiano Ronaldo.

Part of Mohsen’s successful story can be attributed to the academy’s director, Miguel Galan who read about Mohsen’s unfortunate experience in the local newspaper. Upon learning that Mohsen is a professional soccer coach in Syria, the Spanish coach decided to help the Syrian coach. He later told NBC News that the help extended to the refugee was all about brotherhood.

Galan reached out to the Syrian coach through a Spanish reporter. The reporter contacted Mohsen so that he can meet with Galan. Mohsen was offered an apartment in a Madrid suburb and a job. It is yet unclear what team he will be coaching because he still has to meet the requirement of being able to speak Spanish.

Right now, Abdul Mohsen is immersed in learning the Spanish language. With the help of Galan, Mohsen hopes that his family can join him in Madrid so that they can seek asylum. Learning Spanish is an easy task for Mohsen compared to the difficulties and trials he endured as a refugee looking for a better life outside his own country.

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