Religious lead National Lament – Australia

Catholic Religious Australia say: “Many people throughout Australia are disturbed by the punitive and harsh policies and conditions to which people seeking asylum in Australia are being subjected. The recent incident on Manus Island and the death of one person and the injury of many highlights the lack of care and dignity in the policies of both the Government and the Opposition and the absence of awareness of their legal and moral responsibilities.” In response they have launched a National Lament which will include: – Making Friday in Lent a day of prayer and penance for people seeking asylum – Continuing this practice after Lent through to the Ascension – Writing to one’s local Federal member and to the Minister, Scott Morrison, expressing our lament for people seeking asylum in Australia – Engaging in a Week of Prayer and Prophetic Presence from Ascension to Pentecost, 1 to 8 June 2014 Download the National Lament Prayer Sheet.

Australian Bishop Mourns Asylum Seeker Death

Bishop Gerard Hanna, the Australian Catholic Bishops’ Delegate for Migrants and Refugees expressed deep sadness at the death of an asylum seeker detained on Manus Island. A riot at the Australian funded offshore detention facility left dozens of other asylum seekers injured. The Australian Catholic Migrant and Refugee Office called on the Australian government to ensure each person’s claim for protection is considered under Australian Law by competent independent authorities, with appropriate legal assistance and access to an independent judiciary such as the Refugee Review Tribunal. Read the media release here. How might we move people’s hearts to welcome, rather than seeking to deter, those who seek asylum? What causes us to reject and to marginalize some groups of people?