“What can I do to stop what is happening to refugees?” asked a passerby. Our posters said things like, ‘Refugees Welcome’, and ‘If children are sent to sea it’s because it’s safer than on land’. We were a small number but got lots of attention as we stood for 2 hours beside Downing Street over Wednesday lunchtime with the London Catholic Worker to pray for refugees. We heard the names of the hundreds who have died as they tried to reach places of safety from war and persecution. Folksingers sang old and new songs of hope and justice. Scores of schoolchildren passed us curiously and lots of foreign visitors stopped for a while in sympathy. A Sixth Form college group studying Government and Politics took our flyers. Our Lampedusa Cross display showed pictures of overcrowded open boats as well as one of the crosses from island carpenter Franco Tuccio.
We didn’t have a simple answer for the passerby. So we pray and witness during this Refugee Week. The London Catholic Worker will be vigilling from September onwards either in Whitehall or in front of the Home Office on the first and third Tuesday of the month. We CAN do this. Justice and Peace will be praying in Notre Dame de France Leicester Square church on Saturday 25th June at 2.30pm.