CWN - As Pope Francis and Orthodox leaders prepare to visit to the island of Lesbos, the president of the Catholic bishops’ conference in Greece warned that the migrant crisis might give rise to increasing violence.

853,650 of the one million migrants and refugees who entered Europe in 2015 did so by entering Greece, a nation of under 11 million. An additional 153,156 migrants and refugees arrived in Greece by sea between January 1 and April 11, according to the International Organization for Migration.

On Lesbos and nearby islands, migrants began to outnumber residents in September, Bishop Franghískos Papamanólis told L’Osservatore Romano. Because tourism is the mainstay of the local economy, the islands have been devastated by the cancellation of tourist reservations, and the Church has fewer resources to assist those in need.

Citing the case of a mother who had to bathe her baby in mud, Bishop Papamanólis expressed understanding for migrants who are angry about the inhumane conditions in which they live. He praised Catholics for bringing food, water, and other necessities to the migrants.

At the same time, Bishop Papamanólis expressed understanding for residents who fear the looting of shops for food, as well as for the plight of the government, which is out of funds.

As gun sales surge, the prelate said that the situation could become increasingly violent. “The situation now is not peaceful,” he said, “and I do not know how it will develop.”


Teachings of Christ

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly." (John 10:10 ESV)

Entrance of the Mother of God into the Temple

Today is the prelude of the goodwill of God * and the heralding of the salvation of mankind; * the Virgin appears clearly in the temple of God * and foretells Christ to all. * Let us also with a mighty voice cry out to her: * “Rejoice, O Fulfillment of the Creator’s divine plan.” (Troparion - Tone 4)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

The most pure Temple of the Savior, * the most precious Bridal-Chamber and Virgin, the sacred Treasury of the glory of God, * is brought today into the house of the Lord, * bringing with her the grace that is in the Divine Spirit. * The angels of God praise her in song: * “She is the heavenly tabernacle.” (Kontakion - Tone 4)

(November 21st)

Random Proverb

"My son, do not forget my teaching, but let your heart keep my commandments, for length of days and years of life and peace they will add to you." (Proverbs 3:1,2 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

Abbot Macarius was asked: "How should I pray?" The staretz answered: "There is no need to waste time with words; it is enough to hold out your hands and say: 'Lord, have mercy.'  If you are hard pressed in the struggle, say: 'Lord, save me!' He knows what is best for you, and he will have mercy on you."

Abbot Macarius, quoted in St. Gregory Palamas and Orthodox Spirituality, Meyendorff, 1974, SVS Press