AMERICA/BRAZIL - Migrant Week: "Who is knocking on our door?"

Monday, 14 June 2021 emigration   local churches   reception   integration   pope francis  

Brasilia (Agenzia Fides) - "Migration and dialogue" is the theme of the 36th Week of Migrants celebrated by the Church of Brazil from June 13 to 20 with the motto "Who is knocking on our door?". The Week is linked to the 2021 Fraternity Campaign and Pope Francis' message for the 107th World Day of Migrants and Refugees, which will be celebrated on September 26, entitled “Towards an ever greater us”. The note released by CELAM, sent to Fides, underlines that the arrival of migrants in Brazil is a reality which has accompanied the history of the country and that is still present today. Monsignor José Luiz Ferreira Sales, Bishop of Pesqueira, President of the Pastoral Service for Migrants, calls to "be a Church always open", assuming dialogue and leaving aside intransigence. According to the Bishop, we must "create scenarios that promote effective solutions through dialogue and an attitude devoid of authoritarianism". He therefore invites to deepen the phrase of Pope Francis: "it is not only about migrants, it is about humanity". To celebrate the 36th Migrant's Week, a “Basic Text” was prepared, as well as material for discussion groups on three specific themes, and a prayer. The basic Text, organized following the “see, judge, act” method, traditional in the Latin American Church, starts from the idea that numbers reflect faces. There are 271.6 million migrants in the world, according to the basic Text, which talks about the difficulties encountered by migrants in this period of pandemic and the main migratory routes in the world. The reality of migration is illuminated by various biblical texts, that invite commitment. According to the text, "in this process, the most important thing is to give continuity to the initiatives already underway, such as reception; documentation services; social, legal and psychological assistance; commitment to integration in society; promotion in the sense of access to work, housing, health and other public policies". In the prayer prepared for this year's Migrant Week, God is asked: "Renew our faith and our strength to continue fighting in the midst of so much pain and hardship". For this reason, God is called upon to welcome the victims of the pandemic and of abandonment, to seek dialogue with those who think differently, and to awaken in us "the solidarity and the capacity to welcome and integrate, especially migrants, our brothers and sisters". (SL) (Agenzia Fides, 14/6/2021)