Thirteenth Week in Ordinary Time
Wednesday 1 July
St Oliver Plunkett, Bishop and Martyr – Memorial
Genesis 21.5, 8-20
Psalm 33.7-8, 10-13
What to do with a problem like Ishmael
Today’s first reading offers an opportunity to reflect on illegal immigrants. Sarah’s treatment of Hagar must come across as quite callous, especially when read from the perspective of the world of the illegal immigrant. After all, the suggestion to allow Abraham to sire Ishmael through Hagar was hers. In the last election in the UK it was clear that immigration was a major issue. While an open border policy may not be the solution to the problem, the Christian is called to love the immigrant who has cause to seek refuge on our shores. In many ways, Sarah is a bad model of ‘what to do with a problem like Ishmael’ or the illegal immigrant.