Magazine article Forced Migration Review

From the Editors

Magazine article Forced Migration Review

From the Editors

Article excerpt

The role of faith in the humanitarian sector is not easy to measure. Faiths and religious texts generally advocate welcoming the stranger, and there are many organisations (and individuals) inspired by their faith or religion to assist people in need, and many faith leaders and communities who act locally to provide protection and aid. Perhaps the greatest contribution of faith communities lies in their networks and their capacity to allow people on the move to connect and find a welcome in an otherwise possibly hostile environment. Yet it is easier to measure the activities inspired by faith than to measure the difference that having that faith makes, and secularly inspired standards for such activities can appear to be in tension with the faith inspiration.

In addition, the work of faith-based humanitarian actors is not made any easier in a world where religion plays a part - or is used - in fomenting or sustaining many conflicts. Faith communities and their leaders who are caught up in such conflicts face an even harder task. The first article in this issue, from the leaders of three faith communities in the Central African Republic, is a heartening example of courage and determination in such circumstances. …

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