The Catholic Agency for Justice, Peace and Development

Day of Prayer - Refugees and Migrants

A Day of Prayer for Refugees and Migrants is set aside each year to fall as close as possible to World Refugee Day on 20 June. Caritas prepares resources for this day on behalf of the New Zealand Catholic Bishops Conference.

'Welcoming others means welcoming God in person! Do not let yourselves be robbed of the hope and joy of life born of your experience of God’s mercy, as manifested in the people you meet on your journey!'

Pope Francis: Message for the World Day of Migrants and Refugees, 2016

In 2016, the Day of Prayer for Refugees and Migrants fell on Sunday 19 June.

There have been refugees and asylum seekers around the world for more than 3,500 years, but since 2015 the number of displaced people internationally has been greater than it has ever been with 60 million people currently displaced by war and conflict.

For a country like New Zealand, this is more than twelve times our population!

Currently New Zealand resettles 750 refugees each year under the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Quota Programme. We also accept approximately 300 refugees per year through the Refugee Family Support Category and approved 133 cases made by asylum seekers in 2015. Today, the growing number of refugees is something that we cannot ignore.

The New Zealand Bishops Conference (NZCBC) has offered support for increasing our refugee intake and welcome to those settling in New Zealand. The NZCBC has also written a statement on Migration for this year’s Day of Prayer for Refugees and Migrants, and for Social Justice Week in 2016.

We invite all parishes to spend time in prayer for our refugee brothers and sisters and to take action in light of our Gospel of Mercy.

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Tutu ana te puehu - Stirring up the dust