American Refugee Film Has Australian Parallels
Three Afghan Australians who came to this country as refugees saw parallels between their own experiences and the stories of young Mexicans who sought asylum in the USA.
Reza Jaffari, Shah Hussein Hassani and Hussein Ali Nadiri joined another fifty people who watched the screening of a documentary which tells the stories of young unaccompanied Mexicans seeking asylum in the USA and the work of Christian groups in America who support asylum seekers and refugees.
The award-winning film, Posada, was introduced by its producer, US Jesuit Fr Mark McGregor. He also led a discussion following the screening.
The screening was co-hosted by the Catholic Justice and Peace Commission of Brisbane and the Archdiocesan Centre for Multicultural Pastoral Care.
Both the refugees and refugee supporters who attended agreed that the comparisons between the Australian and American situations were strong.
“Just like in the film, we were treated badly by the Government but were supported by people in the community,” Mr Hassani said.
Fr Mcgregor said that his film encouraged Christians to go beyond offering hospitality and encouraged them to walk in solidarity with those who seek asylum.
The Justice and Peace Commission’s Executive Officer, Peter Arndt, said that this is what many Catholics had done here in Brisbane over the last seven years.
“Many Catholics have gone beyond offering food and clothing to asylum seekers and become advocates of compassionate and just treatment of those who come to our shores,” Mr Arndt said.
“We continue to be inspired by the courage of asylum seekers and the good people who walk in solidarity with them, whether it is in America or in our own land,” he said.
“We strongly encourage parishes and schools to get a copy of the film and to use it as a powerful tool to educate people about the meaning of Christian solidarity,” he added.
Copies of the DVD can be ordered on-line .
For further information, please contact Peter Arndt on (07) 3336 9173 or 0409 265 476.
NB This release is issued with the approval of the Commission or its Executive under the provision of its Charter which enables it to speak in its own right. The views expressed in it do not necessarily represent the views of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane.
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