A permanent solution to the refugee crises in the Middle East requires lasting peace and the repatriation of refugees, not resettlement to third countries, said Cardinal Bechara Rai, patriarch of the Maronite Catholic Church, on a pastoral visit to the U.S.
When the Islamic State group rolled across Iraq’s Ninevah Plain in 2014, tens of thousands of Christians fled for their lives to Kurdish-controlled areas of the country. They still wait in limbo in crowded camps, facing an undefined future. The only certainty they enjoy is knowing that whatever happens to them, a group of Dominican nuns will be at their side.
While religious freedom in much of the Middle East is under siege and the civil war in Syria seems to have no end in sight, the Knights of Columbus and others called the United Nations to action. Sister Maria de Guadalupe Rodrigo spoke of her missionary experiences in Syria.
When an aide suggested Pope Francis offer to fly some Syrian refugees back to Rome with him, the pope said he agreed immediately because it was “an inspiration of the Holy Spirit.”
If we look around, can’t we all find some opportunity to make a “small dent” in welcoming the stranger?
The explosive global refugee crisis – likely the top debate-generating news story of 2015 – seems destined to dominate domestic and foreign politics for years to come at a time when Pope Francis has been calling for a compassionate world response.
Dear Editor: The Tablet cover story, Nov. 28, says “Catholics Back Refugee Resettlement,” and Bishop DiMarzio’s column is titled “Welcome The Strangers.”
A Boston cardinal and the Maryland Catholic Conference were among hundreds of faith leaders who called for compassion in addressing the world refugee crisis and stressed the importance of developing a national immigration policy based on humanitarian need.
The U.S. bishops approved a formal statement on pornography and additions to their quadrennial statement on political responsibility at their Nov. 16-19 fall general meeting in Baltimore, Md.
It’s a situation reaching biblical proportions: Thousands of refugees fleeing religious persecution, leaving behind their homes and their lives.