Five years ago, FPCW welcomed two refugee families who arrived in Chicago for resettlement after fleeing their home countries of Afghanistan and Sudan. We worked with World Relief to help them move into and furnish new apartments, enroll their children in school, and begin to adjust to their new life in America. They became our friends and those of us who had the privilege of knowing and working with them were greatly enriched by the chance to participate in their lives.
One of our congregational members who worked closely with the families recently expressed his experience in this way: "Those were some of the more fulfilling times in my life. I felt like we were really making a difference and contributing to the lives of those families. And it opened up doors to help other needy families along the way."
Now, once again, we are expecting a flood of refugees coming to Chicago in the weeks and months that lie ahead. And once again, World Relief is offering ways for us as a church community to get involved whether it is by volunteering as a host church, advocating to protect vulnerable refugees, making a contribution to World Relief or donating household goods or furniture.
Since we participated in a similar effort five years ago, we now know the ropes to a large extent. We know some of the challenges to expect. And we know that we need to have a robust group of members who have time, energy and commitment to devote to this project.
If you are interested in learning more about this opportunity to be the hands and feet of Christ in reaching out to newly arrived refugees in Chicago, please contact
Mary Watt firstname.lastname@example.org or
Pete Holtermann email@example.com
We hope to schedule a meeting sometime in mid-September to discuss the opportunities for us to get involved in meeting this critical need.