Understanding that “you are my other self” will lead us to a new national vision grounded in solidarity.
I come from the El Paso-Juárez border communities. For the past 15 years, El Paso has been ranked as the second safest city in the nation, while, just across the border, Ciudad Juárez ranks the second most dangerous city in the world. Daily in Juárez eight to 10 people are murdered, decapitated, kidnapped, tortured, or are simply disappeared.
Few Catholics are as consistently successful at being peace than the members of the Sant’Egidio community.
Returning after an unprecedented visit with refugees on the Greek island of Lesbos in April last year, Pope Francis startled the world by bringing 12 Syrian refugees back with him to Rome. Who did he turn to for help in orchestrating this humanitarian public relations coup? The Rome-based community of Sant’Egidio.
Since that dramatic gesture, Sant’Egidio has been shepherding the pope’s refugee families and accepting new people fleeing Syria, assisting them with language lessons, job placement, and settling in to life in Rome.
Christians have a responsibility to the men, women, and children fleeing their homelands.
Every minute, 24 people across the globe leave their homes behind and become refugees—roughly 24 per minute, according to the United Nations Refugee Agency. The recent travel ban by President Donald Trump that forbids refugees from seven countries to enter the United States complicates this exodus.