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Tuesday 21 September |
The Feast of Saint Matthew the Apostle
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I Was a Stranger and You Welcomed Me: A Catholic Response to the Border Crisis

HECTOR MATA/AFP

Mark Gordon - published on 07/10/14 - updated on 06/07/17

Finally, Bishop Seitz drew on Catholic Social Teaching (CST), which is rooted in Scripture and especially the example of Jesus Christ. “The Catholic Church’s work in assisting unaccompanied migrant children stems from the belief that every person is created in God’s image,” said Bishop Seitz. “In the Old Testament, God calls upon his people to care for the alien because of their own alien experience: ‘So, you, too, must befriend the alien, for you were once aliens yourselves in the land of Egypt’ (Deut. 10:17-19). In the New Testament, the image of the migrant is grounded in the life and teachings of Jesus Christ. In his own life and work, Jesus identified himself with newcomers and with other marginalized persons in a special way: ‘I was a stranger and you welcomed me.’ (Mt. 25:35). Jesus himself was an itinerant preacher without a home of his own, and … he was a child migrant fleeing to Egypt to avoid violence, persecution, and death. (Mt. 2:15).”

Mark Gordonis a partner at PathTree, a consulting firm focused on organizational resilience and strategy. He also serves as president of both the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, Diocese of Providence, and a local homeless shelter and soup kitchen. Mark is the author of Forty Days, Forty Graces: Essays By a Grateful Pilgrim. He and his wife Camila have been married for 30 years and they have two adult children.

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