Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Church views on the Calais refugee crisis


Madeleine Davies reports in the Church Times on various statements made recently by Church of England bishops: Bishops critical of Government over migrant crisis

Now replaced by Show more compassion to migrants, urge bishops

The article she mentions from the Observer quoting the Bishop of Dover, Trevor Willmott, is here: Church attacks David Cameron’s lack of compassion over asylum crisis.

Other recent commentators include:

The Guardian also has Inside the Calais migrants’ church – in pictures

Posted by Simon Sarmiento on Tuesday, 4 August 2015 at 10:26pm BST | TrackBack
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Categorised as: Church of England

I think it was unfair to attack Cameron so strongly for the use of the word 'swarm'.We all make slips of language and he did go on to say 'of people seeking a better life'.

It is huge problem and the Bishops et al may rebuke but how do we solve this complex issue? MY heart bleeds for the people in Calais but I also know that the NHS is stretched to its limits (partly by immigrants) , we have a shortage of primary schools a great short of houses and limits to the brown field sites available

Maybe if we were not in the EU we need not be open to all European migrants who seek benefits and a better comfortable life - such as the Roma who now occupy a large area of Sheffield. One boasted on TV that he had already sent home £9,000 to his wife and children and would soon be able to build a new house at home. Roma are redirected in Romania and the Slovak Republic but they are not persecuted at home as are those in Calais.But then Business says we must stay in the EU . I just do not know.

Also if Europeans accept all those in Calais many more will follow. Action in their home countries is necessary but what can we do?

If the Church were to address itself to these complicated issues and have more sympathy for European governments it might be more helpful. We can all condemn but can we all solve these problems?

Posted by: Jean Mayland (Revd) on Wednesday, 5 August 2015 at 1:02pm BST

Roma aren't persecuted? Are you kidding me? What on earth does "redirected" mean in this context?

Posted by: Jo on Wednesday, 5 August 2015 at 1:38pm BST

Jean Mayland seems to be unaware that the NHS runs on immigrants and their contribution to the stresses the services are negligible (they are mostly young and fit). I'm sure you (and the TV) can find disreputable people in any community, but to tar them all with the same brush is prejudice worthy of Donald Trump! The Roma (and travellers generally) have been persecuted across Europe, so to dismiss them as seeking benefits is nonsense.
Our problems are of our own making and we must accept our own responsibility. But the key is not shunning the outsider ready to believe every evil tale, but acting with humanity.
It is our humanity (along with the rest of Europe) that is being tested at this time and should the church be silent?

Posted by: RevPeterM on Wednesday, 5 August 2015 at 2:04pm BST

I also forgot to mention that road haulage companies are attacking the government for not doing more to contain migrants as they are losing £700,000 a day and food is rotting.At least opening the disused airfield for parking gives the police an opportunity to give precedence to lorries carrying perishable food or live animals.

Posted by: Jean Mayland (Revd) on Wednesday, 5 August 2015 at 2:07pm BST

Its not just about lack of compassion, its about a lack of justice. Mr. Cameron is typical of the political class in all western democracies, cheer leading neo-liberal economics while vilifying its victims. The use of the word "swarm" serves to dehumanize those who are exploited by the market system that Cameron applauds and serves so well.

Posted by: Rod Gillis on Wednesday, 5 August 2015 at 2:15pm BST

Any genuine refugee would have applied for asylum in the European country of entry.The disgraceful inaction of the French government only widens my respect for Teresa May and her firm stand, in the wake of ill thought out pious claptrap.

Posted by: Robert ian Williams on Friday, 7 August 2015 at 5:55pm BST

@ Robert Ian Williams, Yes, if only the vulnerable and the destitute would just follow the rules set out by the wealthy and the powerful, the world would be such a better place.

Posted by: Rod Gillis on Friday, 7 August 2015 at 10:53pm BST

Did our Lord dehumanize us, when he talked about us being sheep? The current illegal migration is a swarm, and until this is faced as a reality, western Europe will be in peril from a never ending stream. A very sensible editorial in today's Church of England newspaper.

As for lack of justice, our independent judiciary have undermined all attempts by the government to address these problems. Cameron should declare a state of emergency and limit the power of the courts on immigration issues.

Posted by: robert ian williams on Saturday, 8 August 2015 at 4:28am BST

"Did our Lord dehumanize us, when he talked about us being sheep?"

Somehow I never thought of David Cameron as being on a par with the Lord!

The West bears some responsibility for the problems that are driving this immigration crisis. You broke it, you fix it.

We have the same thing here in the US. Awful polices in the drug war, corporate oppression, and games over political ideology perpetrated by the US, and US and multi-national corporations, have created dreadful conditions in some places in Latin and South America, driving immigrants to the US to find safety and work. Of course, our treatment of them, especially the children, is a model of Christian Love. {sarcasm/OFF}

Posted by: Cynthia on Saturday, 8 August 2015 at 7:15pm BST
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