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Addressing the needs of migrants and refugees

Venezuelans walk on a highway in Paraguachon, Colombia, after crossing the border from Venezuela. (CNS photo/Jaime Saldarriaga, Reuters)

By Leela Ramdeen, Chair, CCSJ, & Director, CREDI
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Recently someone remonstrated, stating that the Catholic Church should not “get involved in refugee and migrant issues”. I was floored by her reasoning—particularly as she is also a Catholic. Our Church has always urged us to have a preferential option for the poor and vulnerable. This is a key social justice principle.

If Christians are disciples of Christ, if we are to follow in His footsteps, if we are to build His Kingdom here on earth, if we are to recognise Him in the face of our neighbour then we must take heed of His words in today’s Gospel (Lk 1:1–4; 4:14–21): The spirit of the Lord has been given to me, for he has anointed me. He has sent me to bring the good news to the poor, to proclaim liberty to captives and to the blind new sight, to set the downtrodden free, to proclaim the Lords year of favour.

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