Tuesday, September 29, 2015

The Refugee Crisis: A Leap in Empathy

The shift in the tide of empathy toward the global refugee crisis was undoubtedly the photo of a tiny Syrian boy's body on the beach, his shoes so small and his innocent face resting on the sand.

Two-year-old Alan Kurdi's image provoked people around the world to cry out at the injustice of humanity and the brutality of war. It awakened even the most apathetic soul to bring blankets and toys, open their homes, organize relief efforts and bypass traditional humanitarian agencies to respond in a deeply personal way.

At a time when we feel so much pain and don't know what to do for a global crisis that we have been helpless to act upon, we are awakened by the challenge to our soul of seeing our own humanity in the other. Knowing we cannot solve all the problems in the world has kept so many of us inside our own comfort zone, hesitant to take on the world.