Easter in Our Refugees

04 April 2021|Father Leo J. O'Donovan, SJ|Spiritual Reflection and Resources

As once, those many years ago,
Loving God, –the fate of Franciscan nuns
Caught that night of December 1875
With shipwreck and exile, a double distress,
Tossed by sea and “a hurtle of hell”—
Led our poet to pray,
And beseech you, Lord,
As “hope had mourning on,”
That it not all be for naught
But for a new dawn…

So now, Lord of all, we turn to you from agonies
Too harsh to tell, of your homeless children driven
From central Africa to cities and camps throughout Nigeria,
From the frontier of Myanmar to fenced-in land in Bangladesh,
From Syria after a decade of civil war
To pitiless refuge in Turkey and Lebanon and Jordan,
From shattered Venezuela to an all but equally crippled Columbia,
Fleeing the Northern Triangle of Central America, children first.
To our American border of possibility but also rebuke,
Tragedies not of nature’s making but of misused power alone,

Ah, in all this distress, gracious God, with our poet we pray again,
Let your son, our King, “back, oh upon our souls,
Easter in us, be a dayspring to the dimness of us,”
yet that only if we share the foundering of our refugees here and beyond us,
solidarity with the suffering that is ours and yours and the fullness
of what He is, the first-fruits of the new dawn, the new day, the new age,
the transformation of our poor earth into what you mean it to be,
a heavenly city, an eternal kingdom of peace and joy, flashing light
and glory and home to our brothers and sisters and children now cast out
but meant to be yours and ours for ever and ever.


Rev. Leo J. O’Donovan, S.J.
Director of Mission