In Greece, I saw people offer what little they had to share: child care, use of their showers, food.
It was easy for me to get to Greece. But Europe's system of borderless travel only applies to some.
Recently the online world has been filled with images of people in desperate conditions, images not from Pakistan or Syria but from the Greek islands closest to Turkey: Chios, Lesbos, Leros. One picture showed a migrant raft landing near sunbathing tourists on Kos, an island I once knew well. It was a way station on my yearly visits to the nearby island of Patmos, where St. John was once a refugee himself. I went there to visit another immigrant to Greece: a spiritual poet named Robert Lax, who was Thomas Merton’s best friend.
Historically, the region from the Danube to the Euphrates and from Belgrade to Baghdad is religiously complex. Our modern map is a product of decades of violence and ethnic cleansing.