"I was a stranger and you welcomed me."
Today the illegal immigrant comes before us like that 'stranger in whom Jesus asks us to be recognized jn paul

Who is the refugee or an illegal immigrant? Refugees flee their country out of fear of persecution because of their race, religion, nationality, members of a particular social group or political opinion. Since they are not protected by the State to which they belong it is the duty of other countries to offer them protection. Many flee their countries not because of fear of persecution, but because of situation of war or conflict. While technically they are not refugees, they cannot be sent back to their country, so they are granted a lower level of protection called humanitarian status until they can safely return home. On arriving in a country, immigrants can apply for asylum and thus become asylum seekers. Asylum seekers are not criminals. (JRS pamphlet)

Understanding the sad plight of immigrants may help to avoid serious misunderstandings which prompt prejudices, xenophobia, anti-immigrant propaganda and discrimination. Instead, by ‘approaching’, defending their rights, helping them to integrate, offering practical support: work, housing etc…. and seeing to their basic material and medical needs, we can show that we are treating them as equal brothers.

The ‘universal Declaration of Human Rights’ states: ‘All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights… and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.’
(art. 1)

And the Congregation: “…. fighting in the spirit of the Gospel against destitution and every kind of injustice the Congregation is especially attentive to the appeals which come from peoples whose fundamental rights are ignored or flouted.” (Const. 1,5)

“Discerning the signs of God in world events, it is to all people without distinction of religion, race or social condition that they wish to witness to the unfathomable riches of God’s love.” (Const, 2,12)