Four days after Pope Francis met privately with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán during his visit to Budapest, Orbán's office revealed that the prime minister pleaded with the pontiff not to let Christianity ''perish'' in Europe by encouraging mass migration.
In a tweet, the prime minister's spokesman, Balazs Orbán (no relation), said that when the two met, Orbán presented a letter King Bela IV wrote to Pope Innocent IV in 1250.
''The King warned of the looming threat of the Tatar invasion and called for the unity of Europe. He was ignored. 35 years later, [Hungary] fended off Tatars with great bloodshed.''
The pope made it clear he was not moved. During his seven-hour stay in Budapest, he told a crowd that the Hungarian people must ''extend their arms to everyone'' — an obvious reference to the migrants who have been seeking sanctuary throughout Europe.
As a particularly vocal figure on the issue of immigration, Pope Francis has frequently clashed with conservative politicians throughout Europe. One who has had a particularly turbulent back-and-forth with the pontiff is Italy's League Party leader, Matteo Salvini.
In recent weeks, Orbán, a three-term prime minister, has emerged as the voice of opposition to a fresh tide of migration. Earlier this month, he spoke to a political conference in Slovenia and warned that ''migration must be stopped.''
In 2019, the Orbán government enacted legislation forgiving any couple taxes for the rest of their lives once they have had four children.
John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.
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