EAMON MARTIN was publicly spouting this week about the need to take in Ukrainian refugees.
HIS ANSWER: To house them in parish halls or other available church properties.
Eamon, how would you like your mother, granny, nephews, and neices living in a church hall for 6 months to 3 years?
Jesus said nothing about church halls.
He did say:
“WELCOME STRANGERS INTO YOUR OWN HOME”.
Your home is the Ara Coeli bishops palace in Armagh with many rooms.
Eamon, just tell us plain and simple – how many Ukrainian refugees will you take in to live with you in palatial Ara Coeli?
It’s very easy to throw 20 or 30 Ukrainians into a church hall in Ballygobackwards and get the laity to bring them food, supplies, and money.
And, of course, you will go to Balkygobackwards for the required photo op.
But are you prepared to share your kitchen, living room, and bedrooms with Ukrainian women and children?
I am only able to challenge you like this because I have registered to take Ukrainian refugees into my home and share my sitting room, kitchen, and bedrooms with them.
I will share my toilet and shower with the refugees.
I am in touch with people in Warsaw as we speak to identify a family or families, I want to take in here with me.
And they can come here today if I can get them here!
I could put them in sleeping bags in my chapel. I could put them on a caravan on my driveway.
I could ask members of my congregation to open their homes to them.
But how can I have the nerve and neck to do that if I don’t lead the way and do it myself?
WILL THE BIG LUXURY PRESBYTERIES BE USED FOR UKRAINIAN REFUGEES?
Will the many big, high-end luxury presbyteries in Armagh diocese be used to house Ukrainian refugees – like the one inhabited by Benedict Fee at Clonoe, Coalisland – aka Fee’s Hotel?
Let’s wait and see how many bishop’s palaces and super presbyteries will be used to house Ukrainian refugees.
Taking strangers into your home does involve risks – but Christians take risks for their Christ, do they not?
Over the past 36 years, I have taken a lot of people into my house to live with me – homeless people, addicts etc
A fair number of them have stolen from me or created other problems.
But that’s the risk you take if you act the way you should.
It’s part of what Jesus meant when he spoke about the daily carrying of the cross.
JESUS ON RISK TAKING