Nearly 40 million people around the world are uprooted from their homes and communities by persecution and armed conflict. Part of the General Assembly mandate for Presbyterian Disaster Assistance (PDA) is “ … aid to refugees and displaced persons ...”
PDA works with the Office of Immigration Issues, located in the Office of the General Assembly and the Immigration and Refugee Program of Church World Service (CWS/IRP) to fulfill this mandate and to show hospitality to strangers — that is, to immigrants, refugees, asylum seekers and other uprooted people in the United States and around the world. For information about your congregation sponsoring or supporting refugee resettlement, contact the Church World Service affiliate office closest to you.
Times of joy, affirmation, disappointment and sorrow are events that are shared together in the community of faith. Inviting those who are outside of our community is a witness to the love of Christ that lives within us.
Refugee Care — A ministry of pastoral accompaniment
Most refugees today are fleeing persecution arising in the context of armed conflicts. All refugees fear persecution in their home countries, making them unable to return.
Just as we are in need of pastoral care following a traumatic event in our lives, so also are refugees. Refugees have been forced to leave their homes — often abruptly, and usually unwillingly, because of persecution or oppression. The persecution or fear of persecution means it is not possible for them to return home. Many refugees stay in neighboring countries where they languish in refugee camps; a few will begin a new life in another country such as the United States.
As a church we are called to "welcome the stranger." The scriptures are full of God's reminders to our spiritual forebears that they should welcome the stranger. Many who have extended hospitality know the joy and blessings which can come from walking with refugees. Increased inspiration and strength in our own spiritual journeys can come from opening ourselves to be empathetic and understanding of the struggles of refugees.
If you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday.
—Isaiah 58:10 (NIV)
Immigration issues — Calling Presbyterians to make just immigration a reality, from the Office of Immigration, PC(USA) Office of the General Assembly; includes handouts to help educate your congregation or community.
Minute for Mission — There's Power In One: Reaching Out To One Refugee Family.
Do's & Don'ts of Refugee Resettlement — What you need to know and remember about refugee resettlement and the people you are welcoming.
Local contacts — contact the Church World Service affiliate office closest to you for information about your congregation sponsoring or supporting refugee resettlement.