THE ROAD TO EGYPT AND TO SAFETY
THE THIRD FRIDAY IN EASTERTIDE
We honour and remember Mary and Joseph for their bravery in making the journey along the road to Egypt, to an unknown land, in the hope of escaping persecution in their own country.
Mary and her family fit the definition of refugee in accordance with the United Nations interpretation:
“Someone who has been forced to flee his or her country because of persecution, war, or violence. A refugee has a well-founded fear of persecution for reasons of race, religion, nationality, political opinion or membership in a particular social group.”
In Matthew 2:12-15 we hear that King Herod was planning to “seek out the child to destroy him.” Mary and Joseph left, along with Jesus, and made their way on the road to Egypt.
Pope Francis spoke of the Holy Family, making a connection between the Gospel story of the flight into Egypt and the realities of today:
“So many other footsteps are hidden in the footsteps of Joseph and Mary. We see the tracks of entire families forced to set out in our own day. We see the tracks of millions of persons who do not choose to go away but, driven from their land, leave behind their dear ones. In many cases this departure is filled with hope, hope for the future; yet for many others this departure can only have one name: survival. Surviving the Herods of today, who, to impose their power and increase their wealth, see no problem in shedding innocent blood.
The faith we proclaim makes us see God present in all those situations where we think He is absent. He is present in the unwelcomed visitor, often unrecognizable, who walks through our cities and our neighbourhoods, who travels on our buses and knocks on our doors.”
It is not only the cause of migrants that is at stake; it is not just about them, but about all of us, and about the present and future of the human family.
In expressing this prayerful hope, and through the intercession of the Virgin Mary, Our Lady of the Way, I invoke God’s abundant blessings upon all the world’s migrants and refugees and upon all those who accompany them on their journey.” From the Vatican, 27 May 2019
THE PRAYER OF A REFUGEE-SPONSOR FROM THE USA…..
“Lord God, I can feel the pain suffered by this refugee;
the remembrance of friends killed on the streets,
the memories of tear-gas, beatings and cramped prison cells.
The lack of a job - another kind of hell for a person of independence and strength. The lack of English – another kind of prison for a person of intellect and warmth.
The longing for the familiar, comforting sounds and scenes of home.
The realistic worry for the family left behind.
Grant me the ability to refrain from smothering with well-intentioned care.
Grant me the ability to avoid confusing and burdening this refugee with my own concerns and needs.”
Accompany us, God.
Accompany those displaced, waiting to return to the land.
Accompany those in refugee camps, waiting to go home.
Accompany those in conflict zones waiting for normality.
Accompany those in violent homes waiting for silence.
Accompany those imprisoned waiting for justice.
Accompany us, God, through the waiting, until your kingdom comes……
Joseph, Guardian of Christ,
to whom through dreams
the Lord gave guidance and promise
to lead the Holy Family out of danger
along the road to Egypt to safety.
Holy Joseph, we ask your prayers
and those of Mary, Mother of Jesus,
for those who are forced to leave
the insecurity of their homes for
possible safety elsewhere.
May the Lord transform the nightmare
of their present predicament
into a vision of peace in exile.
We ask Mary, the Mother of Jesus, to pray with us to her Son
for those making the difficult journey navigating their way
along the road to freedom; and those trying to get through
this pandemic, and for our own journeying through the next few days.
THE REGINA COELI -
Joy to thee, O Queen of Heaven. Alleluia!
He whom thou wast meet to bear, alleluia!
As he promised, hath arisen,
Pour for us to him thy prayer,
Rejoice and be glad,O Virgin Mary, alleluia!
For the Lord is risen indeed,
O God, who through the resurrection
of Thy Son our Lord Jesus Christ didst vouchsafe to give joy to the world: grant, we beseech thee, that through His Mother, the Virgin Mary, we may obtain the joys of everlasting life.
Through Christ our Lord.
Alleluia! Christ is risen!
He is risen indeed!Alleluia!