World Refugee Day – June 20, 2017

The United Nations established World Refugee Day in 2001 as a renewed way to focus the world’s attention on this most vulnerable segment of the population.  The United States Bishops’ arm for immigration and migration, Justice For Immigrants, has created an excellent toolkit (WRD-2017-Toolkit) for people of faith.

“Migrants and refugees are not pawns on the chessboard of humanity. They are children, women and men who leave or who are forced to leave their homes for various reasons, who share a legitimate desire for knowing and having, but above all for being more.”
– Pope Francis, Message for the 100th World Day of Migrants and Refugees

“Refugees are individuals who have fled their countries of origin and who meet the United Nations’ criteria of having a “well-founded fear of persecution for reasons of race, religion, national­ity, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion.” Currently, global displacement is rampant with approximately 65.3 million people around the world that have been forced out of their homes – with an estimated 34,000 people displaced per day. The Catholic Church in the United States cares deeply about the plight of refugees around the world and advocates for and participates in their resettlement in the United States. Read our materials to learn more about the dynamics underlying forced migration, the Catholic Church’s position on refugees and resettlement, and how you can help stand in solidarity with refugees” (Justice For Immigrants)

Click on the link to de-bunk 3 myths concerning refugees: jfi-backgrounder-3-myths-FINAL

Refugees are screened more intensely than any other group entering the country and pose little security risk.  Click on the link to learn more about the screening process.  RCUSA-Refugee-Security-Screening-Backgrounder-January-2017

Continue to pray for refugees:

A Prayer for Migrants and Refugees Good and gracious God, we thank you for the gift of families. We are grateful for all of the joy and love that they bring into our lives, and we ask that you provide special protection for all families, particularly those who face hardships as they move in search of a better life. Show mercy to those who travel in danger, and lead them to a place of safety and peace. Comfort those who are alone and afraid because their families have been torn apart by violence  and injustice. As we reflect upon the difficult journey that the Holy Family faced as refugees in Egypt, help us to remember the suffering of all migrant families. Through the intercession of Mary our Mother, and St. Joseph the Worker, her husband, we pray that all migrants may be reunited with their loved ones and find the meaningful work they seek. Open our hearts so that we may provide hospitality for all who come in search of refuge. Give us the courage to welcome every stranger as Christ in our midst. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever. Amen

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