- Strangers in a strange land
With the United Kingdom criticised for opting out of a European Union plan to resettle thousands of migrants from Africa and the Middle East, what should be the Christian response to immigration and does Scripture offer any guidance?
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- Pope in Latin America: Paraguay hopes Francis will make historic gesture of solidarity during three-nation trip
- Leading Catholics urge Duncan Smith to rethink further cuts ahead of emergency budget
- Anti-government protests ahead of Pope’s visit to South America
- Closure of London's Heythrop College puts Jesuit mission and 91 jobs at risk
- What is going on in Brentwood Diocese? Mike Lee
- What happens when you euthanase the mentally ill Sheila Hollins
- The argument between Greece and Germany is about far more than money Revd Dr Giles Fraser
It was with great sadness that I read Christopher David’s letter (The Tablet, 29 March) recounting the effects on the Catholics of Lanzarote of their dire local shortage of priests.
It is painful to hear his lament that “there is an apathy affecting the Church”. It may not be that: it may simply be a sense of helplessness in such unfamiliar circumstances.
But the lack of regular Mass provision, as much of a deprivation as that is, does not have to mean “a slow spiritual starvation and death”. I know I am speaking from the comfort of a part of the world where we have yet to experience (in modern times, at least) such radical loss, but surely we should urge Christopher and others to gather together in Christ’s name, to read the Scriptures, to sing hymns, to pray and support one another in their faith. The Lord will honour his promise and be with them, providing all the graces they need. He does not abandon his faithful so readily.
Deacon Paul Russell, Birmingham
I fully agree with Cardinal Vincent Nichols (The Tablet, 1 March) that the Eucharist is not the sum total of Christian life. Nowhere in the whole New Testament do we find an invitation to celebrate the Eucharist. Scripture scholars draw our attention to the fact that "Do this is memory of me" was most likely added by early Christians to the words of Jesus, and it was done not so much to invite people but to explain to them why the Christians met to break bread. In contrast to the silence of the New Testament on participation in the Eucharist, it repeatedly reminds us that love of neighbour is all that is needed, and that it becomes a sacrament of the real presence of the Risen Lord in the world, a proclamation that those who love one another, even if they hate Jesus, are in fact his disciples.
Subhash Anand, Udaipur, Rajasthan, India