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* * * These are some of the thoughts of Saint Thomas Aquinas on the matter of immigration based on biblical principles.It is clear that immigration must have two things in mind: the first is the nation’s unity; and the second is the common good.As an illustration of this point, Saint Thomas later notes that the Jewish people did not treat all nations equally since those nations closer to them were more quickly integrated into the population than those who were not as close.Some hostile peoples were not to be admitted at all into full fellowship due to their enmity toward the Jewish people.
Such a policy could lead to the destruction of the nation.
However, he sets as the first condition for acceptance a desire to integrate fully into what would today be considered the culture and life of the nation. He quotes the philosopher Aristotle as saying this process was once deemed to take two or three generations.
A second condition is that the granting of citizenship would not be immediate. Saint Thomas himself does not give a time frame for this integration, but he does admit that it can take a long time.
Immigration should have as its goal integration, not disintegration or segregation.
The immigrant should not only desire to assume the benefits but the responsibilities of joining into the full fellowship of the nation.