Is this the Kingdom Jesus Had in Mind?

Reflection for the 14th Sunday in Ordinary Time by FAN executive director, Patrick Carolan

This reflection was originally posted in our July 1st newsletter

These past few weeks we have heard the terrible stories and seen the pictures in the news about how migrant children are treated in detention facilities. Our conscience, our very being should be outraged hearing the reports of the inhumane conditions that children live under while in the custody of the federal government at the border. As the USCCB said in a recent statement: “horrific images of Oscar Martinez and his daughter Angie Valeria who drowned in the Rio Grande Valley while attempting to flee persecution and enter the United States. This image cries to heaven for justice.” As Christians we should be angry and enraged. But we hear also from folks like Fox & Friends’ co-host Brian Kilmeade who said “Like it or not, these are not our kids. Show them compassion, but it’s not like he’s doing this to the people of Idaho or Texas. These are people from another country.” Or Congressman Burgess who suggested that it is not our problem and the children can just leave if they do not like the facilities. We are talking about children as young as one year old.

We also hear from folks, claiming to be Christian, that they are here illegally so they deserve whatever happens to them. Except of course seeking asylum is legal. Asylum seekers must be in the U.S. or at a port of entry to apply for, or request the opportunity to apply for asylum. You cannot apply for asylum, then when it is approved, come to the US. You first have to come to the US and then seek asylum. This is not only US law but international law as well. So when we hear people who claim to be Christian say they should ‘follow the law’, we should remind them that these asylum seekers are following the law.

Can we really claim to be a moral people while allowing these horrific conditions? Can we claim to follow the Gospels? Do we believe that Jesus would say its their fault they should not have come here? In our second reading this week, Paul says in his letter to the Galatians, “For neither does circumcision mean anything, nor does uncircumcision, but only a new creation.” Consider: what is that new creation that Paul speaks of? Earlier in the same letter (Gal 5:4), Paul says bluntly: “You are separated from Christ, you who are trying to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace.” Our Gospel reading from Luke ends with Jesus telling us that “The kingdom of God is at hand for you.” (Lk 10:9) I am pretty sure this is not the Kingdom Jesus had in mind when he said that.

Patrick Carolan
FAN Executive Director

Published in: on July 2, 2019 at 10:00 am  Comments (1)  

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  1. We are a compassionate country. Other reports show people being sheltered, fed, and medically cared for. The numbers are overwhelming our ability, though, and Trump haters want it to get worse. The caged kid photo is misleading. God bless the USA.

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