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Migration, the World, and the Church: Transcending Citizenship with Ecclesial Vision

Thesis advisor: O. Ernesto Valiente / Thesis advisor: Nancy Pineda-Madrid / This thesis begins with an introductory section situating migration in its historical, geographical, and sociological contexts, presenting it as a human phenomenon with economic, political, cultural, and legal attributes, influences, and effects that are felt strongly by individual migrants and the people with whom they come into contact along their journeys. Chapter 1 will present an overview of themes in social ethics pertinent to the issues associated with migration, particularly the impact of globalization and the experiences of families separated by migration. Case studies drawn from an earlier period of the author’s ministry will present typical scenarios highlighting the complex relationships and difficult decisions that develop as a result of migration policies that do not fully cohere with the economic rhythms of globalization, nor the considerations of human flourishing in stable family life. Chapter 2 will explore the political and legal aspects of citizenship, situating the conceptual basis of migration’s challenges on a global scale. This chapter will contrast this approach to citizenship with a Christian anthropology that asserts the dignity of all human beings, also in order to better examine the relationships between the phenomenon of migration, the Vatican II image of a pilgrim Church, and various words and actions from the papacy of Francis. Chapter 3 will present approaches to migration shaped by the perspective of practical theology, again using concrete experience to ground and elaborate upon relevant theories in the field. The focus here will be narrowed to address the Latin American migration corridor more specifically– flows from the “Northern Triangle” countries of El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala into and through Mexico towards the United States. Attention will be given to a variety of issues and experiences affecting migrants, as well as local residents, in Mexico and along the Mexico United States border. Special attention will be given here to the author’s five-week journey with fellow Jesuits along the Mexican migration corridor in summer 2015. Building upon these foundations, the concluding section will review and summarize the main argument of the thesis and present a hopeful vision for resolving the contentious elements of the "migration crisis” through attention to signs of faith and images of the Church revealed in the phenomenon of migration. Seen from this perspective, engagement with migrants at all points along their journey will be guided by a renewed sense of our common human pilgrimage toward greater flourishing, justice, and peace for all peoples of the world. / Thesis (STL) — Boston College, 2017. / Submitted to: Boston College. School of Theology and Ministry. / Discipline: Sacred Theology.
Date January 2017
CreatorsRyan, Christopher J.
PublisherBoston College
Source SetsBoston College
Detected LanguageEnglish
TypeText, thesis
Formatelectronic, application/pdf
RightsCopyright is held by the author, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise noted.

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