News Detail
Fr. Michael Czerny, SJ
Jesuit to UN: Migrants Must be Protected Against Exploitation

July 31, 2017 — Jesuit Father Michael Czerny — handpicked by Pope Francis to be Undersecretary of the Section for Migrants and Refugees at the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development — told a conference at the UN that migrants are seeking the “minimal conditions” of human dignity and integral and sustainable development.

Fr. Czerny said “a sound starting point” for the discussion on migration is the right to remain in one’s homeland in dignity, peace, and security. “No one should ever be forced to leave his or her home due to lack of development or peace."

“The right to remain helps to focus the international community’s efforts on its prior obligation to ensure the sustainable and integral human development of all people in their place of origin and to enable them to become active agents of their own development,” he said. “It also helps us to recognize the social, economic and cultural costs that migration can mean for a country when its own citizens feel constrained to leave rather than remain. It is by ensuring the conditions for the exercise of the right to remain, then, that makes migration a choice, not a necessity.”

The priest said the best from poor countries — “the youth, the talent, the courage, the hope” — are risking their lives traversing the Mediterranean and other of the world’s seas in search of survival and a better life.

“The profound linkages between migration and development can first be seen, sadly, in the absence or breakdown of many of the pillars of sustainable development that have compelled millions to go on the move: In the endemic poverty, hunger, violence, inadequate work, environmental degradation and droughts, weak and corrupt institutions and so many of the other areas being concertedly addressed in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” Fr. Czerny said.

The informal event at UN headquarters in New York was held July 24-25 to study the contributions of migrants and diaspora to all dimensions of sustainable development.

Fr. Czerny said this migration is a “net loss for their countries,” adding that it can become a gain for them if migrants “are welcomed protected, promoted and integrated,” and if they are helped “to transition from objects of emergency care to dignified subjects of their own development.”

He said migrants must be allowed to use the education, skills, ambitions, experiences and cultural wisdom they already have, which can be enhanced through further schooling and training for the development of society.

“For this desired win-win to occur, migrants must first be received and treated as human beings, with dignity and full respect for their human rights, and protected against all forms of exploitation or from being permanently socially, economically or legally cast away,” Fr. Czerny said.

Fr. Czerny cautioned that receiving communities must be given adequate assistance to integrate migrants in a way that does not disadvantage the local poor, and said migrants have the responsibility to respect the “values, traditions and laws” of the communities that welcome them.

He concluded his remarks by quoting a letter sent by the pope to the Italian news agency Ansa last month, in which Pope Francis said, “The presence of so many brothers and sisters who experience the tragedy of immigration is an opportunity for human growth, encounter, and dialogue between cultures in view of the promotion of peace and fraternity among peoples.” Source: [CruxEnglish Canada Province





Recent News

August 21, 2017 — If Fr. Charles Marie Charroppin, SJ, were alive for today's solar eclipse, he'd be having a party.

August 18, 2017 — Today is the feast day of Saint Alberto Hurtado, a Chilean Jesuit priest known for his engagement with Chilean culture and his work with young adults and the poor.

August 16, 2017 — The grave of Jesuit philosopher Pierre Teilhard de Chardin is located at the Culinary Institute of America, formerly a novitiate of the Society.

August 15, 2017 — Today marks the centennial of the birth of Blessed Oscar Romero, the archbishop of San Salvador who was assassinated for speaking out on behalf of the poor and oppressed in El Salvador

August 14, 2017 — A group of Jesuits and Indigenous people embarked on a 500-mile canoe pilgrimage in July to promote reconciliation in Canada.

Aug. 14, 2017 — An astronomer, Br. Consolmagno views the eclipse as an opportunity for millions of people to step back from everyday concerns and appreciate the universe.

August 11, 2017 — Volunteers have finished their summer orientation in St. Louis and have begun settling in to the Jesuit schools where they will serve.

view all news

Search news

Publications
Since St. Ignatius bought a printing press in 1556, the Jesuits have been involved in communications. Today the Society of Jesus publishes a number of award-winning journals and publications. Click below to access our latest issues.

America 8/21/17

America 8/7/17

America 7/24/17



Jesuit Retreat House on Lake Winnebago
Located 80 miles north of Milwaukee, the Jesuit Retreat House on Lake Winnebago welcomes men and women of all faiths to its silent preached and directed retreats.