Pope Francis has taken 12 Syrian migrants back with him to the Vatican after visiting a camp on the Greek island of Lesbos.
The three families, including six children, are all Muslim and had their homes bombed during the Syrian war.
The Vatican said in a statement that Pope Francis wanted to “make a gesture of welcome” to the refugees.
Pope Francis has made an emotional visit to a detention camp on the Greek island of Lesbos, telling the migrants there “you are not alone”.
The Moria camp holds more than 3,000 people, some of whom may face deportation to Turkey.
Pope Francis greeted a group of activists from the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) group, who are campaigning for secession from Nigeria, after they gathered at the Vatican on Sunday.
Pope Francis has greeted several thousand migrants in St Peter’s Square at the Vatican as the Catholic Church marked a day dedicated to refugees.
Pope Francis has criticised private developers for grabbing land from poor people, during his visit to Kangemi, a slum area of Kenya’s capital, Nairobi.
Catholic Pontiff, Pope Francis will go ahead with scheduled three-nation African tour despite security challenges.
Security will be paramount for the first visit by Pope Francis to an active war zone, when he heads to Central African Republic on Sunday as part of a tour that also takes in Kenya and Uganda.
Catholic Pontiff, Pope Francis has failed to convince an overwhelming majority of bishops who have convened in Rome to change church rules that forbid remarried Catholics from receiving communion.
Pope Francis has called for peace “above all” in Syria, Iraq and Nigeria during his traditional Easter Sunday message.
He urged the international community to address the “immense humanitarian tragedy” in war ravaged countries.
The Pope also called for peace in the Holy Land, Ukraine, Libya, Yemen, Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
And he once again referred to the persecution of Christians in many countries.