Sunday, 21 February 2016

A Word from a Jesuit

Pic courtesy Eureka Street

This is well worth blogging.

It's an article from Eureka Street by Andrew Hamilton SJ, and pulls no punches in regard to the relationship between Christian teaching and refugee policy.

Perhaps it should be required reading for the alleged Catholics in the Turnbull ministry.

Some extracts -

The High Court decision on detention in Nauru was brought down just before the Christian season of Lent. It left the government free and determined to deport many young mothers and children to Nauru.
For the mothers and children deportation will bring new trauma with renewed threat to their already precarious mental health. For the Australian public it again makes us ask what brutality, even to children, we are ready to tolerate.But the naming of events can also shape the capacity of a society to respond to new challenges. The events of Bloody Sunday, for example, made it difficult to promote just and harmonious relationships between Protestant and Catholic communities in Northern Island. Naming it Bloody Sunday, with its religious reference and ethical weight, made it even more difficult.

 And -

For the deportation of children and their mothers to Nauru, the story with most resonance is that of Herod's murder of the children around Bethlehem for dynastic, and so security, reasons.
The story gave rise to a feast remembering the children killed — the Holy Innocents. Story and feast stand as an assertion of the dignity of each human being, especially the smallest and most vulnerable, and as a condemnation of political brutality.
The story also warns the government of unintended consequences. If public outrage at the brutality involved in the deportation of children to Nauru leads government leaders and ministers to be identified with King Herod or similar monsters, they may lose the moral authority and respect they will need to carry through difficult decisions.
In times favourable to them this may not be a disaster. But at a time when the challenges facing Australia demand strong leadership and policies that will inevitably anger powerful interests, government leaders will need strong moral capital and support from across society.

Read the whole piece here.


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