Today we observe World Refugee Day to bring awareness about the growing crises due to rapidly increasing refugees in different parts of our World. It is deeply painful to see that people of the land are forced out to face inhuman situations that make their lives fo different – Difficult, Dangerous and Dehumanising.
Recently, on 30th April, Rev Fr John P Thomas, the Secretary of the MOSC – UK Diocese and I attended the Churches Together in Britain and Ireland (CTBI) Conference at Swansea, Wales. I was petrified yet amazed at the heart rending story of Abuna Elias Chacour. He made the entire group feel shattered for what our brothers and sisters in Palestine experience as refugees in their own land having been tricked in a moment! Yet the faith stories and struggles to love and live with all people in this land is a huge eye opener. He is a living legend that can spread the message of LOVE to the ends of the world. His story vividly presents the innovations of a Palestinian Israeli who lives, advocates and campaigns for Peace and Reconciliation. We were blessed to have him as the key resource person. I would greatly recommend the book that he has authored with Mary E Jensen titled, ‘WE BELONG TO THE LAND’.
I am also glad to report at this time that His Grace Angaelos a General Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Church in the United Kingdom, the church of Egypt (founded by St Mark the Apostle around 55 AD and the largest Christian denomination in the Middle East), was elected as the new Moderator of the Churches Together in Britain and Ireland (CTBI) on 30th April at Swansea. The MOSC (IOC) – UK Diocese Ecumenical Relations Desk Congratulates His Grace and looks forward to a fruitful leadership. We pray that under His Grace’s Laadership, we will be able to address the issues in relation to refugees to a considerable extent.
World Refugee Day reminds us that 51.2 million people have been forcefully displaced at the end of 2013. It is very shocking . Aljazeera has 3 stories to make us more aware of the crises and you can read them at the following link if you wish to:
You can also read more about the new humanitarian crises that mark the 2014 World Refugee Day in the following link:
In a world where we hear, talk and dream of Human Rights, there is so much more to be realised that we can reflect all these in places where they are greatly abused. How can we make a difference to this evil as Churches, Communities and Nations?
20th June 2014