Central-Eastern Europe: Welcoming people on the move

During the 8th meeting of the Social Apostolate of Central-Eastern Europe held in Slovenia (8-11 November), the 25 participants reflected on the Slovenian experience as a transit country between East and West. At the Detention Centre for illegal immigrants in Ljubljana they met police officers who described their work and welcomed the co-operation of Jesuits in this sector. ?But Slovenia is also becoming a place where some refugees and migrants wish to stay,? said Peter Ro?i? SJ, a Jesuit student who began his ministry at the Centre three years ago. ?Often they arrive here in poor physical and psychological shape, and we try to meet some of their needs.? The new JRS-Slovenia involves volunteers visiting illegal migrants and asylum seekers, providing basic support with special focus on the children, and assisting with language instruction. This small-scale project is a good example of how to begin in the social apostolate: based on faith, making direct contact with those in need, and having a policy dimension. It is now being formalised as a joint project of the Slovenian Province and the Jesuit Refugee Service. [HL11104]