In their World Day of Peace homilies, the Archbishops of Armagh and Dublin focus on racism, fear of the immigrant, ecological conversion, the Rosary and Brexit.
In his Christmas homily, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin says Christmas is a moment when our faith emerges, even if we have drifted away from regular practice of that faith.
“A new language of racism, mostly opportunistic, understated, but no less toxic, has emerged in our public and political discourse, stoking hostility towards the ‘other’ and testing our own sense of hospitality for the first time,” warned Fr Michael Mullaney.
The terms ‘refugee’ and ‘asylum seeker’ should only arouse heartfelt concern in the Christian heart, says Archbishop Diarmuid Martin.
Some of those who come to Ireland have escaped from very dangerous situations, including religious persecution. On top of the trauma of losing their homes, jobs and often their families, they now face the challenge of being strangers in Ireland – Bishop Leahy.
In his article “Rejecting Racism: Welcome, Protect, Promote and Integrate”, Bishop Doran asks why this is happening in Ireland, “considering our strong missionary tradition” and support for Trócaire, Concern and Goal.
“In our rapidly changing Ireland, we appeal for a new-found respect for every human person, without exception, and a complete avoidance of the use of offensive language."
“From our extensive experience it is clear the immigration system is crying out for reform,” says Catherine Cosgrave, Managing Solicitor, Immigrant Council of Ireland.
“As we remember, let us also ensure that we do not become passive observers of discrimination or inequality in our society but remain vigilant to the emergence of racism and hate speech.”
In the 52nd World Day of Peace message, Pope Francis admonishes those whose political addresses blame every evil on migrants as “unacceptable”.
Bishop Paul McAleenan stated that society in England has experienced a significant rise in hate crime since the 2016 referendum and last year’s terror attacks.
An escaped slave, Fr Augustus Tolton become America’s first black diocesan priest in 1886 thanks to the help of an Irish Augustinian, Fr Peter McGirr from Co. Tyrone.
The very significant levels of fear among those who have been abused because of their race have led to mental health problems, ongoing anxiety, depression, avoidance of public places and normal life, as well as loss of confidence and work and study opportunities.
Lord Mayor of Dublin launches Interfaith Charter dealing with issues such as religious freedom, inter-faith dialogue and the promotion of religious diversity.
The Chairman of the Polish Bishops’ Council for Emigrants, Bishop Wiesław Lechowicz, came to Dublin to celebrate the 170th anniversary of the dedication of St Audoen’s Church - home now to the Polish chaplaincy.
At the annual Festival of Peoples celebration, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin stresses that those who contribute to the common good in Irish society have rights.
Assurances will be sought from all parties and independent candidates in the general election that they will address the concerns of migrants and their families.