I vowed when I started writing my weekly blog that I wouldn’t write about my political views. That is still my aim. I have, however, found the news extremely upsetting these last weeks, months even, and whilst I don’t wish to comment on immigration, I want to remember the innocent adults and children who have lost their lives whilst fleeing their homelands in search of a safer and better life.
So many migrants have been lost at sea this last week according to reports, and whilst some have been rescued or bodies recovered, hundreds are missing, including infants. A heartbreaking story I read on the internet tells of a drowned migrant baby, and highlights the tragic consequences fleeing migrants face when crossing the sea.
Pope Francis met with children recently at the Vatican to talk about migration. He urged them to welcome migrants, because they are not dangerous but in danger.
Most of us here in Britain are lucky enough to go about our daily business in relative safety; we can raise our families, send our children to school and put food on our tables. We have a healthcare system – yes it may be overstretched – but those needing care are never turned away. Things aren’t always perfect, but we can walk freely in green fields and feel the sun on our faces without living in fear.
How must those families have felt as they boarded those overcrowded boats? How did they feel as they left the land they knew to depart for unknown shores? How did the mothers and fathers feel as they dressed their beloved children that morning? I cannot begin to know. One thing is apparent to me; these are the actions of desperate people who are willing to take a perilous journey in the (sometimes vain) hope of a new life.
As we tuck our children and grandchildren into bed at night we can only be thankful. And we can say a prayer for all those families who yearn for safer shores.
Blessings to you.
Here where I sleep,
As the shadows creep
Over silent, darkening hills,
The night is long
And the stars keep
Watch, as my world stills.
But in other lands
Will tiny hands
Reach out to feel some grace?
I am tied to them, with invisible bands
Pulling from another place.
The deepest sigh
The longest cry
Those echoes that ring too long,
Who will hear you passing by
And listen to your song?
© Lyn Halvorsen