As you know, for the past couple of months we have been hoping to begin a ministry with newly arrived refugees. Unfortunately, our timing was not good. Just as we began planning to sponsor a family, the travel ban and hold on refugees went into place. Even though those orders have been temporarily lifted by the courts, New American Pathways, the refugee resettlement agency with which we are working, does not expect any arrivals of new families in the immediate future. However, that does not mean that there isn’t work to be done. We have agreed to work with a family who is already here, but did not have a church sponsor. The family will either be from Syria or the Congo. Our main responsibilities will be to provide friendship, language tutoring, and transportation over the next three months or so.
Representatives from New American Pathways will be with us at St. Dunstan’s on Thursday, March 16, at 7 p.m. to provide volunteer training and orientation. If you’re interested in helping with this family, I hope you can attend.
I saw this version of the Apostles Creed online today. It gives us some things to think about as we begin this new journey with refugees.
Hope to see you Sunday.
The Immigrant Apostles’ Creed
I believe in Almighty God,
who guided the people in exile and in exodus,
the God of Joseph in Egypt and Daniel in Babylon,
the God of foreigners and immigrants.
I believe in Jesus Christ, a displaced Galilean,
who was born away from his people and his home, who fled
his country with his parents when his life was in danger.
When he returned to his own country he suffered under the oppression
of Pontius Pilate, the servant of a foreign power. Jesus was persecuted,
beaten, tortured, and unjustly condemned to death.
But on the third day Jesus rose from the dead,
not as a scorned foreigner but to offer us citizenship in God’s kingdom.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the eternal immigrant from God’s kingdom among us,
who speaks all languages, lives in all countries,
and reunites all races.
I believe that the Church is the secure home
for foreigners and for all believers.
I believe that the communion of saints begins
when we embrace all God’s people in all their diversity.
I believe in forgiveness, which makes us all equal before God,
and in reconciliation, which heals our brokenness.
I believe that in the Resurrection
God will unite us as one people
in which all are distinct and all are alike at the same time.
I believe in life eternal, in which no one will be foreigner
but all will be citizens of the kingdom
where God reigns forever and ever. Amen.