Thursday of the 2nd week of Lent, 16 March

LENT 2017

Thursday of the 2nd week of Lent, 16 March

How do you build a community of welcome?

16 March 2017

Thursday of the 2nd week of Lent, 16 March

From today’s Office of Readings:

“‘Why do you take all this on yourself for the people? Why sit here alone with the people standing round you from morning until evening?'”

Exodus 18:14
Over the weeks of Lent, we are introducing you to a number of the refugee friends JRS accompanies. We invite you to walk with them and stand alongside them.

How do you build a community of welcome?

Mourad’s Story – Part 5

When Mourad was first hosted through the JRS at home scheme, he was placed with the Jesuit Community at Farm Street Parish in Mayfair. Mourad was greeted at the door and welcomed as part of the community.

It took a little bit of time for Mourad to settle into the rhythm of having stable accommodation. He’s been in the UK nearly 17 years now, and more than half of that time he’s not had a secure place to live.

“They make me comfortable, it does make a difference. They respect me.”

Read the next stage of Mourad’s journey tomorrow.

Pray with the Office of Readings

The Office of Readings is an extended prayer service involving the singing of Psalms and the reading of two longer passages, one from the Bible, the other from the writings of the saints and the Church’s councils. It is a veritable treasure trove of Christian spirituality. It is celebrated first thing in the morning each day by priests, religious and many lay people.

Today, we invite you to join Damian Howard SJ in reflecting on the Daily Office on Readings. You can read the readings on Universalis.

“Today’s reading from Exodus in the Office of Readings shows us an over-stretched Moses on the brink of burn-out! Being God’s prophet, he is the one to whom everyone comes with their disputes and disagreements, seeking wise and just arbitration. But there is just too much for him to do. So God tells him to appoint deputies, judges “who fear God, trustworthy men who hate dishonest gain” to help him in is task.

A truly healthy society is never built on the wisdom and goodness of the few, however outstanding they might be. It requires a wider community, attuned to the common good and resistant to corruption in all its forms. Such a group establishes a culture, an accepted way of proceeding which is able in the long term to put down roots, move hearts and thus to transform a whole society.

We can lament the lack of strong leadership in our countries and communities. We can tell ourselves that there is very little we can do on our own to solve all the problems of the world. And if we are not careful we can end up opting out, turning in on ourselves, becoming defensive and even bitter.

It’s a challenge at times like that to remember that God could only build up His people because He could count on a network of trustworthy, honest individuals with good hearts, people who were not simply out to pursue their own advantage. That memory encourages us to live out those simple but precious values with confidence and serenity, knowing that the Lord will make use of them in His own good time.”

Damian Howard SJ

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[Back to Lent 2017]


Jesuit Refugee Service UK
The Hurtado Jesuit Centre
2 Chandler Street, London E1W 2QT

020 7488 7310

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