Post # 1
What would you do about these refugees?
These refugees are a family of three with a well founded fear of persecution fleeing from a home town where the country’s despotic ruler has terrified the local population by making threats to kill everyone’s youngest children. He has already started carrying out these threats.
The family consists of:
A very young (teenage) mother married to an older man who is not the father of her child. She has never had a job and prior to her marriage was ostracised by her community for being pregnant out of wedlock. She has no employment skills.
The husband is a man in his thirties or forties. When questioned he claims that he is an honorable man who has taken pity on the young woman and has married her to avoid her community ostracising her any further. He has specialised manual employment skills. In his home country he earned his living as a skilled artisan working with wood.
The child is a boy aged no more than two. He is healthy and appears well cared for. It is clear that he is very much loved by both his parents.
The family are religious people and have darker skins. They could easily be mistaken by their appearance, clothing and manner for Middle Eastern refugees. They have no qualifications and cannot speak English.They have no savings or health insurance or life insurance. They have left behind almost everything they own. All they have are a few clothes and a little money and food – enough to tide them over for a few days. They also have their only means of transport with them – a donkey.
Because they have travelled a great distance the family are absolutely exhausted and in no fit state to travel any further.
What would be the best thing to do in this situation? As a Christian what decision would you make? What would you do with them?
Post # 2
Deleted my reply! I realised what you were talking about!
Post # 3
I would probably refer them to my local organization that helps refugees …. but if that’s full I guess we find them a barn and wait for three guys to come with gifts? 😂
Post # 4
Well it’s pretty clear who you’re talking about here.
Honestly, I think it’s a little unfair to use the story of Christ’s life and compare it to the plight of refugees right now (as sort of a bait-and-switch of “ah-ha, gotcha, you wouldn’t support Christ!” or something along those lines). We live in a different world where political violence and extremism hide in plain sight. The Christian in me would love to take in every refugee child and give them a warm and loving home. The Christian in me would love to provide housing, jobs, education, and safety for refugee parents all over the world. However, the pragmatist in me, who has worked within the government in areas connected to this, understands that the simple act of being a refugee can be exploited and that not all people are honorable and good.
I support refugee charities and give assistance where I can. That doesn’t mean I am also not skeptical of motives. My work has taught me that healthy skepticism is necessary.
Post # 5
Supersleuth : I guess I am confused 🤔 Are you saying that only Christains are showing a lack of compassion and concern for refugees? Because from where I am sitting it is pretty widespread and not just Christains. In fact if you look up Father Bower and the Gosford Anglican Church on facebook you will see just one of a large number of religious groups that support refugee rights (and a lot of other rights people like to say Christain are against).
Also Germany is predominantly Christain and they aren’t exactly shutting the barn doors so to speak.
Post # 6
Yeah, I don’t see how you can justify simultaneously being Christian and anti-helping refugees from Muslim nations. The above poster’s line about “the christian in me” vs “the pragmatist in me” is telling. It’s been awhile since I read the bible, I admit, but point me to the passage that says “behave like a Christian until your pragmatic side tells you that might not be safe, in which case put yourself first!” ??
What would Jesus do? He would help anyone in need, no questions asked. He would not hesitate to risk his own life to help someone who might do him harm. Actually, that’s exactly what he did.
That said, there are more ways to help with the crisis in Syria and in other areas of the world than taking in a family of refugees. You can donate to a charity that is helping people on the ground in Aleppo, for example. Here is a good article about ways to help: http://people.com/human-interest/ways-to-help-aleppo/
Post # 7
I give this thread 3 pages until, like all the others, it becomes uncivil and off track.
Post # 8
I don’t think you have to be a Christian to know that helping people is the right thing to do. If love were a currency the world would be a much different place.
Post # 9
italianbride0508 : I agree. This will not end well.
Post # 10
What is the going rate for myrrh these days?
If this is to prove what a good Christian you are, you can find a family very much like this one, so air out your guest room and get crackin’!
Post # 11
j_jaye : I agree. It’s not limited to being a “Christian” lack of compassion. In fact here in the states, the majority of organizations who are taking in the refugees (small as it is) are those which identify as Christian or Evangelical.
This isn’t a “Christian” problem- this is a general misinformation campaign to try and paint women and children who are vetted for almost 2 years as somehow unvetted and dangerous.
Post # 12
Not a terribly sneaky “gotcha” hypothetical! I expected more subtlety from a supersleuth!
Post # 13
Thanks for the lovely post, I hope more people will give it some thought <3
Post # 14
Supersleuth : As a caveat, I work at an NGO that provides services to asylum seekers. I would probably try to communicate with them if I could and if not (and our office was open), I would probably take them to my work, with the hope that we had a suitable interpreter around to ask what kind of help they wanted. Depending on what they said, I would probably offer them advice on their options and then explain how to get the ball rolling, if I couldn’t take them to the appropriate location myself.
ETA: This is actually something I’ve done a number of times in the last 7 and a bit years that I’ve worked for my current organisation. Well, the donkey being involved might be a first…
Post # 15
The movement of refugees is one of the great political and moral dilemmas of our times. In amongst the practicalities of dealing with a large chunk of humanity on the move we still have to ask the difficult questions i.e. do we view refugees as somehow ‘other’ and less human than ourselves?
The description I’ve given could be the holy family or it could be any out of a number of displaced families over the last 2,000 years. Does it matter? Would our reaction be different depending on who it was?
I’m not expecting answers but I do hope that we all think a little about this during this Christmastide.
And can I say that I am in awe of those working with refugees. You deserve our heartfelt thanks!