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Perth Archbishop commends National Lament for asylum seekers

Posted on: March 5, 2014 3:45 PM
The Manus Island processing centre
Related Categories: Abp Herft, asylum, Australia

[Diocese of Perth] When Pope Francis visited Lampedusa, an Italian island where many refugees arrive and many die trying to reach safety, he said that "we are a society that has forgotten how to weep."

Catholic religious orders in Australia are inviting all Australians to participate in a “National Lament”. It is a campaign of prayer, penance and action for people seeking asylum in Australia. Archbishop Roger Herft has commended this campaign to the Diocese of Perth.

Many people throughout Australia are disturbed by the punitive and harsh policies and conditions to which people seeking asylum in Australia are being subjected. The recent incident on Manus Island and the death of one person and the injury of many highlights the lack of care and dignity in the policies of both the Government and the Opposition and the absence of awareness of their legal and moral responsibilities. We want to make a Christian response to refugees, not seeing them as a problem to be solved.

The National Lament will have two parts:

Part 1: Engaging in prayer, penance and action for people seeking asylum in Australia:

  • Making Friday in Lent a day of prayer and penance for people seeking asylum
  • Continuing this practice after Lent through to the Ascension
  • Writing to one’s local Federal member and to the Minister, Scott Morrison, expressing our lament for people seeking asylum in Australia

Part 2: Engaging in a Week of Prayer and Prophetic Presence during Ascension to Pentecost, 1 – 8 June 2014

Catholic resources for the National Lament can be found at:

Local Anglican prayer resources can be found HERE.