I would like to be like Gary Smith, SJ. He does heroic and humble work with refugees in Africa. I have written about him here before. To feel the spirit of the Jesuit Refugee Service, read this letter that Gary recently wrote about his work in South Africa. It’s harrowing, but also extraordinarily moving:
But however difficult the refugee situation is for us, it is one of the bleeding breaches in the wall of humankind into which Jesuits are called to stand. There, in the breach, in the confrontation with this evil inflicted upon the world, we are seized by the indignation that empowers us to effect change. . . . Our JRS mission is to be with and cherish refugee women, holding them in their vulnerability. We anoint their wounds with the oil of respect and tenderness, wounds inflicted by poverty, violence, abandonment, second class human status, and—often—male stupidity. Each day our goal is to bring them the best of our compassion and the best of our skills. Each day we prayerfully ask God to give us the wisdom to realize that goal.