In case you’ve been away, I mentioned recently that nearly a year ago now, I read an article about Pope Francis’ thoughts about our worldwide refugee crisis where he called for us all to embrace four verbs as our shared response: to welcome, to protect, to promote and to integrate. These four actions are so integral to a Christian response to our brothers and sisters in crisis, so reflective of the call to be imitators of Jesus, that I think they each are worth exploring a bit given what is happening now.
This week, a look at the third verb, to promote. According to Francis, to promote means a determined effort to ensure that all migrants and refugees are given the opportunity to realize their full potential. This means freedom of religion, employment opportunities, language assistance and a path to citizenship. The Pope is explicit about the need to assure family reunification, speaking the truth that separating parents from children must stop. Finally, he calls for those countries with greater resources to offer assistance to those who are in need.
Next week, the last verb, to integrate.