Skip to main content

Language: English / Gàidhlig

Loading…

Chamber and committees

Meeting date: Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Meeting of the Parliament 20 September 2016

Agenda: Time for Reflection, Topical Question Time, Economy (EU Referendum), Decision Time, Eye Health Week


Contents


Time for Reflection

Good afternoon. The first item of business is time for reflection, for which our leader is Douglas Yates of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and Interfaith Scotland.

Douglas Yates (Interfaith Co-ordinator, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and Interfaith Scotland)

 

“For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:

Naked, and ye clothed me”.

“Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.”

The Saviour knew what it was and what it felt like to be a refugee—he was one. As a child, Jesus’s family fled to Egypt to escape the murderous King Herod. At various points in his ministry, Jesus found himself threatened and his life placed in danger. Ultimately he would lay down his life for each one of us. Perhaps, then, it is all the more remarkable that he repeatedly taught us to love one another and to love our neighbour. Truly,

“Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction”

and to

“look to the poor and the needy, and administer to their relief that they shall not suffer”.

There are highly charged arguments in Government and across society regarding what should be done to assist refugees. My remarks today are not intended in any way to form part of that discussion, but rather to invite us to focus on the people who have been driven from their homes and their countries.

In “The Book of Mormon” we read of the people of Alma who,

“in their prosperous circumstances, they did not send away any who were naked, or that were hungry, or that were athirst, or that were sick, or that had not been nourished ... therefore they were liberal to all, both old and young, both bond and free, both male and female, whether out of the church or in the church, having no respect to persons as to those who stood in need.”

Being a refugee might be a defining moment in the lives of those who are refugees, but being a refugee does not define them. Some of them will go on to be teachers, musicians, or engineers. Indeed, many of them were these things before they left their countries and lost everything. This moment does not define them, but our response to them will define us.

“Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.”

In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.