Tuesday, 8 September 2015

Churches should Open to Refugees and Poor

Over a week ago I wrote to the Irish Examiner, Irish Independent and Irish Times suggesting that our churches should open their doors to the poor and to refugees.  None of the three newspapers published my letter but the Examiner put part of it on their online edition.

My suggestion was not anti-religion or anti-church.  It was a practical proposal.  Many churches are only half full at weekends.  The Irish winter can be cold, bitter, wet, windy and dark - in other words miserable - not forgetting that hail, snow frost, thunder and lightning come when they will.  The plight of the homeless in Ireland, because of its prolonged and desolate winter can be unbearable especially for the weak.

The proposal is for all places of worship.  The largest Churches are Christian in Ireland.  The founder of the Christian church advised his then Jewish followers not to worship either on the Holy Mount or in the Temple.  He also advised them that when they wished to pray, not to do so openly but in secret.  That founder is respected in most religions including Islam but his teaching has been largely ignored.  It would be a good time to put his advice into practice.  His was a humane  teaching.  I cannot see him asking his followers to spare large comfortable buildings for worship when humans of every shade are in dire need of food and shelter.

I believe that the followers of most religions would respond positively to my suggestion.

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