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Refugee Week 13 – 20 June: The Gift of the Stranger

Whether we want to acknowledge it or not, in the world today we are becoming more and more a depressed community.[1] The Dominican theologian Albert Nolan speaks of our times as the ‘age of despair’.[2] We look everywhere for people, things and experiences that might help us overcome this sense of hopelessness, but to no avail. Yet, a place to which most people have not yet turned is the lives of the forcibly displaced; while, for those of us who have had the privilege to be invited into their lives, this is in fact an obvious place to look. I would like to argue that the best response we can offer to the hope that forcibly displaced people have in us – as developed nations of ‘the North’ and sought-after places of asylum – is the gift of hospitality and solidarity, and that, through this welcome, forcibly displaced people offer us a great gift in return: the discovery and increase of our own hope, through their spirituality of hope.

Source: Thiningfaith

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