A Stranger and You Welcomed Me – National Migration Week, January 3-9, 2016
In the Gospel of Matthew (25:35) Jesus tells his disciples, “I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me.”
The call to welcome the stranger plays an important role in the lives of faithful Christians and has a particularly central place for those of us who work in the migration field. The migrant, who moves from one country to another is truly a stranger in the midst. Often unfamiliar with the local tongue of the new country, not to mention its customs, the migrant needs the support of local communities so that she can better adjust to her new surroundings.
National Migration Week 2016 picks up on the theme of welcome and, in doing so, calls on each of us to welcome the stranger among us.
The United States Catholic Conference offers these resources
Bilingual Prayer Card: Please feel free to download and distribute this prayer card, which highlights many of the difficulties that migrants face in their daily lives, the struggles they face in migration process, and their need for God’s protection.
Migration Prayer Booklet: This resource provides a collection of prayers that focus on the theme of migration and the struggles that migrants confront.
European Refugee Crisis: More than four million refugees have fled Syria and the surrounding region since 2010, with most taking shelter in surrounding countries. Many thousands have died in the process; countless others struggle with the daily ritual of just trying to survive. Learn more about what the bishops are doing to address this problem and how you can help.
Unlocking Human Dignity, Detention Report: Please take an opportunity to read the recently released report by the USCCB and the Center for Migration Studies, which highlights the inequities at play in the migrant detention system and suggestions to make it more just and respectful of human dignity.
To order resources, please visit the USCCB Store
For any questions that you might have related to National Migration Week, please contact Todd Scribner at TScribner@usccb.org