Immigrants should be celebrated says leading churchman - news from ekklesia

By staff writers
June 15, 2005

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Immigrants should be celebrated says leading churchman

-15/06/05

The Catholic Bishop, Pat O'Donoghue, has urged that both the contribution of migrants and the work of agencies who work with refugees be celebrated.

His comments come ahead of Refugee Week which takes place from 20-25 June.

"The fact that the world still finds a need for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and refugee NGOs, serve as a sobering reminder of the international community's continuing failure to prevent violence, persecution and poverty and other root causes of conflict and displacement" the bishop said.

"The UNHCR tells us that the world's refugee population continues to fall, but protracted refugee situations remain, as people continue to flee their homes in countries such as Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Myanmar, Iraq and Uzbekistan et al. It is clear that the problem of forced migration has not gone away, and it is likely to remain one of the major concerns of the international community in the 21st century" said O'Donogue who is Chairman of the Office for Refugee Policy of the Catholic Bishop's Conference of England and Wales.

"It is important that we celebrate the staying power of UNHCR and other refugee NGOs, but equally important we ought to celebrate the courage of the millions of refugees and displaced people who have survived the last 50 years. Often losing hope, they are amongst the great survivors of the 21st century and they deserve our respect and support" he continued.

"In this year's Refugee Week, we remind ourselves about persecution as being one of the main causes of forced migration and displacement; we remember the Refugee Convention, particularly the principle of non-forcible return of people to territories where they may face persecution. But most of all, we celebrate the enormous socio-economic and political contributions refugees make in their adopted countries."

"The sacred concept of asylum must always be preserved for the persecuted ? its values are timeless and grounded in the Judeo-Christian tradition of 'welcoming the stranger.'"

Find books now:

Immigrants should be celebrated says leading churchman

-15/06/05

The Catholic Bishop, Pat O'Donoghue, has urged that both the contribution of migrants and the work of agencies who work with refugees be celebrated.

His comments come ahead of Refugee Week which takes place from 20-25 June.

"The fact that the world still finds a need for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and refugee NGOs, serve as a sobering reminder of the international community's continuing failure to prevent violence, persecution and poverty and other root causes of conflict and displacement" the bishop said.

"The UNHCR tells us that the world's refugee population continues to fall, but protracted refugee situations remain, as people continue to flee their homes in countries such as Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Myanmar, Iraq and Uzbekistan et al. It is clear that the problem of forced migration has not gone away, and it is likely to remain one of the major concerns of the international community in the 21st century" said O'Donogue who is Chairman of the Office for Refugee Policy of the Catholic Bishop's Conference of England and Wales.

"It is important that we celebrate the staying power of UNHCR and other refugee NGOs, but equally important we ought to celebrate the courage of the millions of refugees and displaced people who have survived the last 50 years. Often losing hope, they are amongst the great survivors of the 21st century and they deserve our respect and support" he continued.

"In this year's Refugee Week, we remind ourselves about persecution as being one of the main causes of forced migration and displacement; we remember the Refugee Convention, particularly the principle of non-forcible return of people to territories where they may face persecution. But most of all, we celebrate the enormous socio-economic and political contributions refugees make in their adopted countries."

"The sacred concept of asylum must always be preserved for the persecuted ? its values are timeless and grounded in the Judeo-Christian tradition of 'welcoming the stranger.'"

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