News
On Feast of the Holy Family, Jesuit Parishes Urged to Respond to Plight of Refugee Families

Today on the Feast of the Holy Family, Jesuit leaders are asking their parish communities to consider how they can best respond to the plight of migrants, who often live in vulnerable situations, fearing separation, detention, deportation, and limited participation in their communities.

In a message scheduled to appear in Jesuit parish bulletins this weekend, the nine Jesuit provincials of the United States and Canada write that Jesuit parishes have “always been a home to the immigrant and the foreigner. Many of our churches were built to care for immigrants, and they remain one of the few Jesuit ministries that serve the public on a daily basis.”

The Gospel readings for the day describe a homeless refugee family with a newborn baby fleeing persecution and traveling to a foreign land. It is a familiar story, one that is re-enacted each and every day.

When Pope Francis blessed the crèche in St. Peter’s Square in early December, he drew a parallel between the most famous refugee family and their modern-day counterparts. “In the painful experience of these brothers and sisters, we revisit that experience of the baby Jesus, who at the time of his birth did not find accommodation and was born in a grotto in Bethlehem and then was brought to Egypt to escape Herod’s threat.”

At every opportunity, Pope Francis reminds us that all families are holy in God’s eyes. In their statement, the Jesuit provincials urge parish communities to “take Pope Francis’ message to heart and discern how they can best respond to the plight of migrants, remembering that love must be shown in deeds and in words.”

The message from the Jesuits also suggests ways of helping families who live in the shadows. “There is so much good that a parish can do for the most vulnerable in our communities — from sponsoring refugee families to lifting our voices in the public square, calling for greater protections for our brothers and sisters who are suffering. As a family united in Christ, please remember refugees and migrants in your prayers and pray that we grow in our awareness of the issue of migration.

“In this Christmas season where we continue to contemplate the mystery of the incarnation, let us never stop looking for the face of Christ, particularly in the faces of the poor and alienated.”

To read the entire message, click here.


Recent News

February 21, 2017 — José "Chuy" Camacho, SJ, moved to the United States from Mexico when he was 10 and entered the US Navy when he graduated from high school. By the time he was 39, his faith was calling him to a new life.

February 16, 2017 — Join Jesuit Advocates in speaking for the voiceless on matters of social concern.

February 16, 2017 — The Society of Jesus' 36th General Congregation took place from October 2 – November 12, 2016. The gathering produced a new Superior General, Fr. Arturo Sosa, SJ, of Venezuela, and a number of documents and decrees to guide the future of the Society.

February 13, 2017 — Following the International Day Against the Use of Child Soldiers, join Pope Francis in praying for an end to this warfare.

January 30, 2017 — Students from Jesuit schools throughout the United States gathered in Washington, DC, for the annual Jesuit Mass for Life and March for Life.

January 30, 2017 — The Jesuits denounce the executive order.

January 26, 2017 — The Jesuits reaffirm our solidarity with migrants and calls upon elected officials to act with conscience.

view all news

Search news

Publications

Jesuits Summer 2016

Jesuits Spring 2016

Partners Fall Winter 2015



Bellarmine Jesuit Retreat House
Bellarmine Jesuit Retreat House is located on 80 acres of gently rolling meadows and wooded countryside just 35 miles northwest of Chicago.