24 Nov Syrian refugees – is it safe to welcome them?
Terrorist attacks linked to Islamic radicals continue to stir fear and uncertainty around the world. Overwhelming numbers of Syrian refugees desperately need new homes, work and help, and yet we hear that some of those who have carried out the bombings linked to ISIS entered Europe with refugees. The efforts to encourage nations to help resettle Syrian families now face a backlash. Numerous US governors and members of Congress, as well as a presidential candidate, are opposing resettlement here, out of fear that the screening or vetting process may not guarantee security. Others say visa waiver programs for tourists are an even greater risk.
Similar fears surfaced after Japan bombed Pearl Harbor, and Japanese Americans on the west coast were sent to detainment camps. Is there a way to reconcile the needs for security and compassion in this new crisis?
Before we place our fragile hope in the erection of ever more barriers — physical or political — we can turn to Christ Jesus and pray for the wisdom which scripture tells us is from above, “peaceable and easy to be entreated” (King James version). Our prayers for such wisdom can safely guide short and long-term decisions and contribute to the conversion of would be terrorists to peaceful agents of change.
For balanced reporting on the Syrian refugee crisis, terrorist attacks and political debate, check out the Christian Science Monitor digital issue HERE. Visit our Reading Room for recent editions of the Monitor weekly news magazine, and to learn more about effective prayer as explained in the Bible and the writings of Mary Baker Eddy.