Children in the refugee camp of Doro. / Enfants au camp de réfugiés de Doro.

June 20.  UN World Refugee Day.   The subject of migrants and refugees comes up in discussion almost constantly today for a whole lot of reasons, many practical ones, like finances, work, where to stay and where to go for help.  Josh shared with the others in his confirmation group. “Those are very real worries that we all have, young and older refugees.  But I find that what worries me a lot is my sense of identity, who am I, where do I belong?  At school I am a stranger and many other young people are often not very welcoming. I often cry when I am in bed at night, for the things I have lost, my home and most of my family. My mom does understand but I know very well that she has her own problems too. I must say that our church refugee community has been the most helpful.” The group listened attentively and resolved to do their best to do what Pope Francis advised. “to welcome, to protect, to promote, to integrate.” They also agreed, “This World Refugee Day let us keep in mind especially those people whose lives are in danger because of their faith and the religion they belong to.”   

Reflect, share, act. Scripture:  the grace of God has been shown in the churches of Macedonia. In a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part. They gave according to their means, and beyond their means, of their own free will, begging us for the favour of taking part in the relief of the saints. 2 Cor 8:1-9. Pope Francis:  Young migrants experience separation from their place of origin and often a cultural and religious uprooting as well. Fragmentation is also felt by the communities they leave behind which lose their most vigorous and enterprising elements and by families, especially when one or both of the parents migrates, leaving children in the country of origin.  For the communities to which they come migrants bring an opportunity for enrichment and the integral human development of all. CV93.