Refugees lives are at stake. We must pray for our leaders, for refugees and for migrants living among us.
What: Join Bishop Gregory Parkes at a Prayer Vigil for Migrants and Refugees to show support for our migrant and refugee brothers and sisters who live, work, and make their homes in our community.
When: February 1, 2017 (Wednesday)
Time: 7:00 p.m.
Where: Nativity Parish, 705 E. Brandon Blvd, Brandon, FL 33511
Why: many people in our community and throughout our nation are concerned about the plight of refugees and migrants living within the United States and those throughout the world as the new administration (President Trump) enacts executive orders that stop refugees from certain countries from entering the United States for up to 120 days. While fair-minded people can disagree on the appropriate course of action, the Church encourages our leaders to follow Christ’s example of compassion and mercy with all people, including strangers from foreign lands. There is scriptural basis for allowing refugees into one’s country. For example, Leviticus 19:34 reminds us:
“Any immigrant who lives with you must be treated as if they were one of your citizens. You must love them as yourself, because you were immigrants in the land of Egypt; I am the LORD your God.” Pope Francis has also repeatedly called for all people of the world to welcome the migrant and refugee, who are often fleeing violence and impossible living conditions. At the same time, he has articulated that migrants need to “cooperate ever more closely with the communities that welcome them, for the good of their own children (For the World Day of Migrants and Refugees, Jan. 15, 2017).”
The Catholic Church has repeatedly called for collaboration between the White House and the Congress to work together for comprehensive immigration reform. While countries have the right to protect their borders and to regulate immigration in a way that is fair and promoted public safety, the Church has repeatedly underlined the importance of treating the undocumented members of our community with dignity that is theirs as children of God and that respects the sanctity of their lives as such.
Special Instructions: Do bring your rosary. Please do not bring any signs or posters.