By Leslie Ann Aquino
For a Catholic prelate, the heartbreaking photograph showing the lifeless bodies of a migrant dad and his daughter on Rio Grande is a call for everyone to help migrants.
“No one cannot keep quiet nor closed their eyes. It is a calling to help, to heal, our answer as our Lord Jesus asked us to be, a Good Samaritan,” Bishop Ruperto Santos of Balanga said in a statement.
The head of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines Episcopal Commission on Migrants and Itinerant People added that the journey of migrants is always a way of the cross.
“There are dangers, even imminent death,” said Santos.
“Looking at the picture of lifeless father with his daughter on Rio Grande, all can see the sufferings and sacrifices of anyone who will do everything for the good of their loved ones. Not much are happy ending, but mostly tragic,” he added.
The CBCP ECMI head urged the faithful to be like the characters in the Bible, Veronica or Simon of Cyrene by helping wipe their pain, or carry their burdens.
Bishop Santos said this is also the reason why the CBCP ECMI, walk and work with Filipino migrants for the protection of life and promotion of their rights.
“Here, we attend to their loved ones and there, in foreign lands we accompany them with our chaplains. We make them feel that our Church is always with them for their welfare and well-being,” he said.
“Let us continue to assist and help our OFWs and pray always for safety, sound health and success with their works,” added Santos.
According to reports, the Salvadorian migrant and his 23 month old daughter died swimming across the Rio Grande while trying to reach the US.