Immigrants and Being Homesick for a Future

On July 3 I will be using Genesis12:1-4a and the recent film Brooklyn to the explore the common biblical themes of home, homesickness, and transplants yearned for.

The first immigrants in the Bible are Abraham. his wife Sarah, and their household. Responding to God’s call and God’s promises of children, land and a new home they pack up and move several hundred miles away from all that is familiar.

In the film Brooklyn a young Irish woman in the 1950s faces a depressing future in Ireland. Eilis has no education, no worthwhile job, no beau, and no prospects for her future in Ireland. With the help of her sister and a kind Irish priest in Brooklyn, Eilis travels to America. In her new land she acquires a job, starts learning to be a bookkeeper and begins a relationship with a gentle Italian plumber. At first she is desperately homesick for Ireland but eventually she settles into her new life. A death in the family brings her back to Ireland and she finds herself homesick for Ireland and homesick for Brooklyn. She faces a tough decision: does she stay in Ireland or return to Brooklyn? Ireland has offered her a worthwhile job and an Irish beau. So has Brooklyn.

Millions of people in American history have been in the same situation as Eilis. There is nothing especially unique about Eilis. See the film to learn what she decides. Or…come to church and learn the deciding factor for Eilis decision and how it relates to us today.

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