Tag Archives: refugees

an uncertain future

Photo published for A Record 65.6 Million People Displaced Worldwide: UNHCR

The United Nations High Commission on Refugees (UNHCR) has just announced that there are over 65,000,000 refugees that have fled their homeland. That’s the highest number in history. Over 12,000,000 of these refugees are from one country, Syria.

At issue is not only their future, but the future of the world. How this part of our human family is received, how they are treated, and how they are accepted will determine not only what will ultimately happen to them, but exactly who we are and the values we truly espouse.

I have watched families fleeing their burning homes while dodging sniper fire. I have had the privilege to visit dozens of refugee camps and camps for the internally displaced, and have seen firsthand the fear, the anguish and the heartbreak of those driven from their homes.

In the end, it boils down to opening our arms to others in need, even as we would hope arms would be opened to our families if in the same tragic circumstances. We cannot go too far wrong just hewing as closely as possible to the Golden Rule.

Warning Signs for the Wise

could there be a greater difference?

This is why I continue to be amazed, confused, and just totally dismayed by the huge numbers of those professing to follow Jesus that actually voted for the #BLOTUS and still support him. Anyone who is seeking to demonstrate the love of Christ, cannot possibly think that this man reflects anything other than the complete and total repudiation of all that Christ is and that He teaches.

The values of Drumpf are not Christian values. The #BLOTUS does not demonstrate any of the values taught by Jesus. Those ignoring these facts need to seriously reflect on just how shallow their spirituality must be to defend and support such a man.

take action now

The following article is from GLOBAL CITIZEN. It is a call to action, asking for the signing of a letter to the President to reverse his executive order for extreme vetting. This is a simple way to take immediate action that reflects the moral values we hold as people of faith.

Reverse President Trump’s Executive Order to Ban Refugees

The United States has just slammed its doors on the world’s most vulnerable.

On January 27th, President Donald Trump signed an executive order, implementing extreme vetting of refugees who enter the country.

It suspends the entire US refugee program for 120 days as new “extreme vetting” rules are developed, even though America already has the toughest vetting program for refugees in the world.

It halves America’s refugee intake to a maximum of 50,000 annually, with a complete ban on admitting refugees from war-torn Syria.

It stops seven predominantly Muslim nationalities – Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen – from even visiting America. This includes dual-nationals, green card holders, and most visa-holders.

As Global Citizens, we know that opposing viewpoints are a vital part of any robust political discussion. We work with all sides of politics to ensure that governments continue play a leading role in ending extreme poverty.

However, there are basic values that weave the fabric of the American Democracy – like not discriminating on the basis of religion and nationality.

This policy crosses that line.

Refugees are the most vulnerable fellow citizens on our planet, fleeing unimaginable horrors of conflict, persecution and disaster.

These are fathers, mothers, sons, and daughters.

We, as global citizens, stand proudly as supporters of refugee communities and vulnerable populations, regardless of religion or national origin.

We must call President Trump out on his actions and ensure that refugees can have place to call home.

nothing is to be feared

We cannot control the actions of others. That is a given. But, we can control our response.

One of my favorite passages in the New Testament is in the First Letter of John where the writer talks about the need for loving each other more. In one verse he writes, “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear..”

We need to love more, and we need to fear less. As Madam Curie so elegantly states, nothing in life is to be feared. Nothing. So that includes those that don’t look as we do,  those who speak a different language, those that worship differently than we do, those whose sexual orientation is not like ours, and even those who might hate us,

Fear is a powerful demonstration that the depth of our discipleship is too shallow. Our lack of love for those we do not understand is a clear signal that we do not love God enough to understand. We have nothing to fear.

a prayer for more love

Most gracious and compassionate God, how thankful I am this morning for the love you pour into Your children’s lives. We are sustained through Your everlasting mercy and your grace. I praise You for Your presence that never leaves nor forsakes us.

Today, we have another gift, the multitude of opportunities to reflect that love and grace You have already shown us. Help us embrace that gift. Help us reach out to those most in need of love and compassion.

Empower us through Your Holy Spirit to be ambassadors of reconciliation. Let us be true peacemakers in a world filled with conflict and violence. Let Your love flow through us that all those around us would feel Your love and acceptance.

Especially, Lord, I would ask that those who are fleeing their homes might know Your strength. Allow them a sense of Your presence that they might have a respite from their fear.  And allow us who live in safety to reach out to them with the aid and relief most needed. Grant us all a spirit of hospitality.

Give us more love, Lord.

All of this we ask in the Name of the risen Christ. Amen