I’m hoping to speak at church today, but I’m not sure that I’ll get the chance. I’m posting this here so I can share it with my pastors and my friends.
It’s been an honor to work with a group of volunteers at (my) Church of the Beatitudes assisting a group of Refugees that are settling in Phoenix AZ. We were told we were given a family that they were sure would need some extra care becuase our church has such a great reputation for generosity, attitude and responsibility.
As Christmas approaches we’re seeing the family
- struggling and persevering in their to transition into financial independence
- working with us, their network of help, and the local community at large to create a sense of personal identity within a big strange city, and alien culture
I’ve been doing all I can to help, but with my hectic schedule and time commitments it never feels like enough. Still even the littlest effort has been rewarded a hundred fold.
The needs the family has now are many. In some ways fewer than they were when they first arrived. In other ways greater. I know that many of you have been wondering how it’s been going, and I’d love to expand on my very brief overview above, but in the interests of time I’ll refrain. it’s such an interesting story to tell that I urge you to seek out members of the committee to hear it.
I’d like to finish by asking you all to consider helping out, because I know you’ll get as much reward for your effort as I have. The most interesting thing I can tell you we’ve identified as a need is a job coach that can help an ambitious and energetic 18 year old man, put together a game plan to get a GED, and a scholorship for a College Education basically on his own. What a wonderful difference can be made by someone. Is it that someone we know in our congregation? Outside of it?
We are also working on a special Christmas donation so that the family can enjoy giving each other presents. This is outside of our duties, but something special we want to do anyway. If you would like to help us financially, in addition to your normal stewardship of course, then please mark your contribution as “Refugee Family”, and either:
- place it in the collection plate marked
- mail it to the church office (the address is on your order of worship)
- or drop it off at the reception desk
Thanks very much for your time today and have a blessed holiday season.