Together we can bring hope for Afghani Refugees!
“Let sibling love continue. Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.” Hebrews 13:1-2
As the United States planned its military withdrawal from Afghanistan, faith-based refugee resettlement organizations led calls for evacuation of Afghan allies whose lives are endangered by the country’s new Taliban regime. As Christians, God asks us to welcome the stranger in our midst! And the strangers are beginning to arrive!
“We are overwhelmed at the support of our community! We have never seen this scale of love, generosity and support in World Relief’s history,” said James Misner, senior vice president of strategic engagement for World Relief, one of the nine agencies contracted with the U.S. government to resettle refugees in the country. Earlier this year we began to explore how we might develop a partnership with our local World Relief office. World Relief staff has met with BLC church staff, and they will meet with your Congregation Council in September. Then on Nov. 7, World Relief will be present for our reconnection hour immediately following worship at 9:00am.
These meetings were all in place prior to the unfolding crisis we now observe taking place in Afghanistan and we feel a sense of urgency to respond with neighborly love and compassion.
Thousands of Afghan families are becoming increasingly vulnerable following the Taliban takeover. Especially those who helped the US military over the last 20 years and the approximately 12,000 Christians living out their faith in a country where the Taliban has no tolerance for such things. These two groups face the greatest danger. Together we can respond.
Here are three ways you can help:
1) Welcome Kits are a bundle of all the essential items needed for a newly arriving Afghan SIV or refugees as they start their new life here in Chicagoland. Here is a list of what a Welcome Kit includes!
2) Make a donation through our website – go to www.bethlehemluth.org. Click on ‘Online Giving.” Then click on “World Relief” to designate your gift, enter your donation amount.
3) Those interested in advocating can email lawmakers through World Relief’s website, urging them to “expand and expedite life-saving refugee protections for Afghans fleeing violence and persecution.”
Seeta Habib and her family were resettled through World Relief in October 2020 through the special immigrant visa program. She and her husband had served as interpreters and journalists for U.S. forces in their home country, and they were consequently targeted by the Taliban. This is her story: https://chicagoland.worldrelief.org/2021/08/17/i-helped-u-s-troops-in-afghanistan/