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(4) Retreat Week Four

Reflections for the week

JRS Online Retreat: Day 21 – A Journey from Death to Life: We Are Never Alone
Sunday, November 21, 2010
Toronto, 21 November 2010 – My eyes were suddenly opened. Why did I not see? After so many years of meeting refugees I still did not understand the hope, the strength, the determination, the sense of community that is often present among them.
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JRS Online Retreat: Day 22 – The Bread of Life
Monday, November 22, 2010
Lobone, 22 November 2010 – During the Eucharist, we baptised 40 children and adults. The longing in the people for the sacraments of baptism and the Body of Christ, long denied to them, was palpable. I could not help but contrast the enthusiastic attitude of the Acholi people in this remote corner of South Sudan with the often jaded attitude to sacraments I had encountered during my years as a pastor back in Dublin.
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JRS Online Retreat: Day 23 – God Present in the Dreams of Refugee Children
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
23 November 2010 – The children in the primary school at the Osire Refugee Camp in Namibia sat for their classes wherever they could find space – under the trees (if the teacher could find a tree), in the food distribution center, as well as in the classrooms with a roof and walls. There were too many refugees for the limited number of classrooms.
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JRS Online Retreat: Day 24 – Signs of new life with refugees
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
Mae Hong Son, 24 November 2010 – I work in northern Thailand with Burmese camp-based refugees. Our Jesuit Refugee Service team is composed of Buddhist, Catholic, Baptist and Methodist fellow workers, a mixture of faiths reflected in the nearby camp population, but quite different from the overwhelmingly Buddhist context of Thailand.
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JRS Online Retreat: Day 25 – Education: A Burning Candle of Hope
Thursday, November 25, 2010
Rome, 25 November 2010 – Educational programs — whether primary school or college, vocational or teacher training, literacy or peace building and community development — touched and changed lives of children and youth; women, teachers, and local leaders; and soldiers and ex-combatants.
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JRS Online Retreat: Day 26 – Rejoicing as Refugees Find a Home
Friday, November 26, 2010
London, 26 November 2010 – Thankfully, there are many places where refugees have found new homes, new beginnings, and some of them are technically called the ‘durable solutions’ that UNHCR seek for all refugees: finding a place of resettlement, returning home or being able to integrate in the local country of residence. JRS staff who are not refugees working in isolated parts of the world can also identify with the joy and peace of getting home again after hard work done.
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JRS Online Retreat: Day 27 – Learning to Love Like God
Saturday, November 27, 2010
Shanghai, 27 November 2010 – Jesus Christ is sought, found and loved in others, and above all in the poor and those who suffer. And so, one increasingly becomes “a man for others.
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