In her reflection, Idelette quotes Johnson’s article:
Whilst still a small baby, Jesus became a refugee. Jesus, his mother, Mary, and Joseph had the experience of being dispossessed and marginalized as aliens in a foreign land. The immediacy of their departure is striking. The angel instructs Joseph to ‘get up . . . take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. So he got up . . . immediately.’ They no doubt collected a few belongings. However, was there time to say farewell to loved ones? That is very doubtful.
Like the Holy Family, the stories we hear from refugees reflect the “immediacy” of their departure. If, for example, they are working in the fields when an attack comes, there is often no time to return to their house, or even to find close relatives, such as one’s wife, husband or children. Very often families are fragmented when the violence of war enters their lives and they are forced to flee to save those lives.