“Welcome one another, therefore, just as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God.” Romans 15:7
As Christians, we are called to welcome all peoples and bring the good news to Christ to them regardless of who they are or where there are from. However, in practice, we humans are not always that good at the inclusive part of being Christian or just plain being inclusive. We divide ourselves on race, creed, wealth, ideology, and politics.
This is especially true whenever we face times of crisis and the fear of the unknown about a certain group of people overcome our good senses and morals. This has been a black mark on the United States of America with the internment of Japanese Americans during WWII and now threatens to do so again, not only in the United States but for the countries of the European Union as well.
The Refugee crisis from people fleeing the civil war in Syria has brought the enemy of Christ and inclusiveness once again to the forefront of people’s minds in the Western World. Fear of terrorist attacks, of losing national identity and just not knowing how to deal with so many new people flooding the system all at once. These are all legitimate fears, but one cannot let them override one,s normal sense of what is right and let that fear take over. A little fear is good, it is a survival instinct, but when that fear paralyzes us and changes us, that is never a good thing.
For the United States and most of Europe who is now dealing with this crisis, we all should know better. For both have strong Christian roots, even when faith has lost much of its meaning in much of Europe and to a lesser extent in the United States as well, both still have the underlining values and teachings of being a Christian, such as inclusiveness.
The thing to remember when it comes to crises such as the current refugee one and the threat of terrorism is that a society can still be open and accommodating to those in need and still take precautions. A society can also take steps to make sure that assimilation does happen, as is largely done in the United States already. The main thing is that if we let our fear of something take over, it will change who we are before we even realize it. This change is never in the long run, good for ourselves and society for it is self-destructive. It is self-destructive because one never makes the change them self, but lets their fear do it for them. So matter what happens in the future, remember to be inclusive of others, for Christ died for all.