Day of Prayer for Refugees and Migrants

On 20th June the Church in Aotearoa New Zealand will hold a Day of Prayer for Refugees and Migrants. The Holy Family as displaced persons fled to Egypt in Jesus’ early life, and so 'like Jesus Christ forced to flee' Pope Francis highlights the importance of fraternity through knowledge, reconciliation and sharing as ways to build a future of justice and peace within our human family. 

Palestinian refugee at the border5

Like Jesus Christ, forced to flee


First Reading: Job 38:1, 8-11

Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 106 (107): 23-26, 28-31

Response: “O give thanks to the Lord for he is good; for his mercy endures forever.

Second Reading: 2 Corinthians 5:14-17

Gospel: Mark 4:35-41

“Peace! Be still!” … He said to them, “Why are you afraid? Have you still no faith?” 

Excerpts from Pope Francis Message for the 106th World Day of Migrants and Refugees

‘In the light of the tragic events that have marked 2020, I would like this Message, although concerned with internally displaced persons, to embrace all those who are experiencing situations of precariousness, abandonment, marginalization and rejection as a result of COVID-19.’

‘During the flight into Egypt, the child Jesus experienced with his parents the tragic fate of the displaced and refugees, which is marked by fear, uncertainty and unease. Unfortunately, in our own times, millions of families can identify with this sad reality.’

‘Displaced people offer us this opportunity to meet the Lord, even though our eyes find it hard to recognize him: his clothing in tatters, his feet dirty, his face disfigured, his body wounded, his tongue unable to speak our language.’

‘You have to know in order to understand … When we talk about migrants and displaced persons, all too often we stop at statistics. But it is not about statistics, it is about real people! If we encounter them, we will get to know more about them.’

‘In order to grow, it is necessary to share… To grow truly, we must grow together, sharing what we have, like the boy who offered Jesus five barley loaves and two fish… yet they proved enough for five thousand people!’

Mangere resettlement centre 2021 06 03 at 9.52.20 PM


To read His Holiness Pope Francis Message for the 106th World Day of Migrants and Refugees click HERE

Caritas Aotearoa New Zealand has published parish resources for 20th June. HERE

Liturgy resources pdf to download HERE

Myths about migration HERE

Understanding migration HERE



Suitcases Caroline Selfors from Unsplash

Palestinian woman with baby waiting at the border crossing. Photo supplied.

Ben Schrader, 'Housing and government - Immigration barracks to workers’ dwellings', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 3 June 2021)