The Meaning of the Scalabrinian Year and the Canonization of Saint John Baptist Scalabrini
Fr. Leo Bobila, CS
25th Anniversary of the Beatification of Saint John Baptist Scalabrini - closure of the Scalabrinian Year
Our world today is a highly globalized world. However, it is also becoming a highly divided and polarized world where other persons become more a stranger if they are different. We see more refugees and asylum seekers today as borders between countries are reshaped by wars, pandemic and natural disasters and yet other borders are becoming harder to pass through and the sympathies of countries, groups of persons or even individuals tend to focus more on their own kind and interests. From time to time, the news headlines are rattled by news of boat people and other eye catching glimpse of what is happening in certain places of the world while other places where the same things or even worse things are happening are put to the sidelines because they are not anymore sensational and had become an ordinary event of migration even if they still remain a harsh reality. The prevalence of tragedies in the world of migration had numbed peoples hearts and they had become ordinary acceptable events of life. Also, our human tendency not to be good learners from our common human history worsen the case of amnesia that makes us insensitive to the flights of new migrants. We have forgotten that our ancestors too were once migrants themselves. This has led to an increasing apathy towards new groups of peoples arriving in the very same shores where other migrants have departed to seek welcome in other shores.
These tragic contexts make the Scalabrinian Year and the canonization of Saint Scalabrini meaningful. It can provide a glimmer of hope in the dark nights of human insensitivity to the flights of migrants: that it is possible to have a better approach of mutually welcoming one another, that it is and it has always been possible to journey together.
Fr. Leo Bobila, CS
Rector of the Scalabrini Theological House of Studies