Highlights - January 2016

World Day of Migrants and Refugees

World Day of Migrants and Refugees

Yesterday, Sunday January 17th, was the 102nd World Day of Migrants and Refugees.  The Diocese of Hamilton held its annual Multicultural Mass in recognition of the many cultures that make up our Catholic community. 

In his message for the day, Pope Francis reminds us that:

“Migrants are our brothers and sisters in search of a better life, far away from poverty, hunger, exploitation and the unjust distribution of the planet's resources which are meant to be equitably shared by all.”

Reflect on this message with one of the resources from the Library.


Sr. Marilyn Lacey, This Flowing Toward Me: A Story of God Arriving in Strangers (2009) – An engaging memoir of a sister who has spent twenty-five years working with refugees and immigrants.

Mary Jo Leddy, The Other Face of God: When the Strangers Calls Us Home (2011) – Meditative reflections from the Director of the Romero House, a temporary shelter for refugees in Toronto, ON, mixed with real stories from the people who have called this shelter home. 

Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, For the Love of Immigrants: Migration Writing and Letters of Bishop John Baptist Scalabrini 1839 – 1905 (2000) – The migration writings of Blessed John Baptist Scalabrini, who championed the cause of immigrants during the mass exodus from Italy at the turn of the last century.  Bishop Scalabrini’s pastoral care of migrants and his methods in the field of global migration remain valid today.  He is recognized as the “first great sociologist of emigration.”

Fr. Robert A. Sirico, The Social Agenda: A Collection of Magisterial Texts (2000) – A series of texts on the social teaching of the Church, including writings on the Church’s social message, the dignity of the human person, human rights, religious freedoms, charity, and immigration.


In the Footsteps of Jesus: Catholic Social Teaching at Work Today (2003) - An overview of the themes of Catholic Social teaching and a summary of the scriptural and historical context for their development.

The Good Lie (2014) – In 1983, orphans of the civil war in Sudan, known as The Lost Boys and Girls, traveled nearly a thousand miles on foot, enduring unspeakable circumstances in search of refuge.  Over a decade later, a humanitarian effort would bring thousands of these survivors to America.  This major motion picture is the tale of four friends’ journey from their devastated homeland to America, and the people who help empower them to begin again.

The Migrants’ Journey (2007) - Thousands of people from Latin America and Mexico are driven from their homes each year by economic hardships and political upheaval.  The United States is spending billions of dollars to reinforce their southern boundary, but migrants desperate to feed their families still flood across the borders, through legal means or increasingly dangerous ones.  This is their story.

For more information on these resources or for a full list of resources on the topics of refugees, immigration, and the social teachings of the Church, please contact the Library at 905-528-7988 ext. 2270 or by email at dwilliams@hamiltondiocese.com.


Marguerite Bourgeoys

Marguerite Bourgeoys

January 12th is the feast day of St. Marguerite Bourgeoys; the first woman in Canada to be made a saint.   She was born on April 17, 1620 in Troyes, France and came to Canada in 1653 to teach school in Ville Marie (Montreal).  When Marguerite reached Ville-Marie, she found there were no children of school age, due to high rates of infant mortality.  Instead, she spent her first years in Ville-Marie working with the settlers to establish the city. They built a stone chapel, Notre-Dame-de-Bon-Secours; the first in the city, which is still in existence today.  St. Marguerite did eventually open a school.  In the fall of 1657 she was given a small stone stable for this purpose by Paul Chomedey de Mai­son­neuve, the founder of Montreal.  Later, St. Marguerite and fellow sisters, extend their role in education by establishing more schools, providing both public and private education.  St. Marguerite founded the Congregation of Notre Dame of Montreal, one of the first non-cloistered religious communities of women in the Catholic Church.  She died on January 12, 1700 and on October 31st, 1982, St. Marguerite was canonized a saint by Pope John Paul II. 

Interested in learning more about this pioneering saint? Contact the Library to check out a biography of St. Marguerite Bourgeoys.  We can be reached by phone at 905-528-7988 ext. 2270 or by email at dwilliams@hamiltondiocese.com.