Immigrants and Refugees

World Day of Migrants and Refugees

'Welcoming the stranger is intrinsic to the nature of the Church itself

and bears witness to its fidelity to the gospel.'  

(Erga migrantes caritas Christi, 22)  

 

Signez la pétition du Haut Commissariat des Nations unies pour les réfugiés (HCR) intitulée « Seriez-vous solidaire avec les réfugiés? ». Vous pouvez la trouver ici : Solidaire avec les réfugiés


 
 
 
 
 

Immigrants and Refugees

Displacements of populations are not a new phenomenon in our world.  It is a recurrent fact of human history.  The Canadian territory has continually been marked by the movements of people, starting with the arrival of Asiatic tribes via the Bering Strait, giving rise to the various Native populations of our country.

 

For a few years now, Gatineau has been the second most popular destination for immigrants in Quebec.  We have welcomed waves of immigrants from Portugal, Lebanon, Latin America, Haiti and francophone Africa.

Immigration changes the demographics, not only of our cities and villages, but also of our parishes, since many immigrants are Catholics.  They bring with them the richness of their cultures and traditions.  Welcoming and integrating immigrants in our Christian communities is both an ongoing constant challenge and an opportunity for growth and renewal.

On the other hand, the welcoming of refugees is firmly entrenched in the Judeo-Christian tradition.  In the 1970’s, many parishes of the diocese of Gatineau opened their doors to Vietnamese ‘boat people’.  Today, Syrian refugees are knocking at our doors.  A few parishes have committed themselves to sponsoring refugee families, both Muslim and Christian, in partnership with Accueil Parrainage-Outaouais.

 

“I Was a Stranger and You Welcomed Me”: Pastoral Letter on Welcoming Refugees

"I Was a Stranger and You Welcomed Me," the Pastoral Letter now being released by the Episcopal Commission for Justice and Peace of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB), to continue reading...

 

THE IMMIGRANTS' OUR FATHER

Our Father and Father of all who emigrate to flee physical, economic or social violence, You who are in heaven and accompany us on our earthly journey;

Hallowed by thy name, a name we utter with the trust of daughters and sons, of sisters and brothers, a name that Jesus revealed to the world so that we might believe in You;

Thy kingdom come, a kingdom of peace, solidarity and love, a reign which is for all and excludes no one because of their origin, culture or customs; 

Thy will be done, your will that we be one as you are one with Jesus and the Holy Spirit: so shal your will be fulfilled on earth as in heaven;

Give us this day our daily bread, the bread of the freedom to emmigrate and be considered as persons having dignity, the bread of welcome and sharing, the bread of health, of education and of work, the bread of the Eucharist which comforts us as was comforted Elijah the prophet and the migrating people in the desert;

Forgive us our debts of sin and mercy, particularly when we closed our eyes to our journeying brothres and sisters and were not able to recognize you in their suffering faces; forgive us when, through habit and selfishness, we do not seek solutions to our community's problems, just as we forgive those who trespass against us and treat us like strangers;

Our Father, Father of all men and women, lead us not into the temptation of excluding those who seek your mercy, in this Church which we ourselves embody;

But deliver us from evil, particularly that evil that undermines the brotherhood and unity of your children spread throughout the world like so many seeds of the Kingdom, now and forever.

AMEN!

Source: (Prière composée Maria Clélia Alves, MSCS. Cf. http://www.crc-anada.org/fr/documentation/dossier-refugies - Notre Père des migrants.

 
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February 2017/02/09