Bangladesh Catholic Church holds webinar on migrants, refugees

Rohingya refugee camp in Bangladesh. Credit: DFID_CC 2.0.

The Catholic Church in Bangladesh held a webinar on the occasion of the 106th World Day for Migrants and Refugees on September 26.

It was sponsored by the Justice and Peace Commission of the Catholic Bishops Conference of Bangladesh and the Emergency Response Program of Caritas.

Pintu William Gomes, head of the Resource Mobilization section of Caritas Bangladesh, welcomed the participants and speakers, while Father Liton Gomes, executive secretary of the Justice and Peace Commission, shared the objectives of the activity.

Father Gomes outlined Pope Francis' 2016 pronouncements on the protection and promotion of the rights of migrants and refugees.

Bishop Gervas Rozario, president of Caritas Bangladesh and chairman of the Episcopal Commission for Peace and Justice, said “immigration is nothing new in human history.”

In his message, the prelate said Jesus Christ himself fled from Nazareth to Egypt “in fear.”

Quoting Pope Francis, Bishop Rozario said people “need to love immigrants, be kind to them, serve them, and help them integrate into one country.”

He said immigration is a human right.

“God made this beautiful world for everyone. We have separated the lands for people by our own needs. As a creature of God, all human beings have the right to enjoy each and every corner of the world,” said the bishop.

Bishop Rozario expressed his gratitude to all those who work for refugees and migrants, especially humanitarian agencies like Caritas. 

He reminded everyone to also take care of “those who are becoming immigrants inside the country.”

"We are fortunate to have the opportunity to be involved in this great thought and service of the Catholic Church,” he said.

James Gomes, director of programs for Caritas Bangladesh, said those who are serving the migrants and refugees community “are blessed.”

“I would urge everyone to think of this work not as a job but as service and as a responsibility for the Church,” he said. - Nikhil Gomes/RVA News