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Praying for the Refugee Situation in Richmond

Good things are happening in the New American community. A great majority of our friends have settled in successfully with jobs, have purchased cars, many are moving up from crowded two bedroom into larger three bedroom apartments. They continue to improve language skills and their children are learning and growing. Life here is a continuum of their lives from their country of origin; through weddings, new babies and birthdays they celebrate another year of life in a new country; America, their new home. They are asking about how to go about purchasing a house. They are understanding the American dream and want that for their family. Pray for wisdom as we advise and support their dreams!

We have welcomed our first Christian pastor into the west end community. In the camps, “Pastor Peter” led a church of 600! He has connected with our partnering church, West End Presbyterian, and is now leading worship services Sunday evenings in their chapel, where 60-80 are attending. Pray for this body of believers!

Homeland Security has imposed additional measures in the immigration application process which sometimes slows the number of arrivals, however, the flow of refugees will continue, creating an increasing demand upon the resettlement agencies, congregations, and others already overburdened with providing services and support to so many in need. Additional frustration is heaped upon families on both sides who wait to reunite after being separated for many months. Pray for this situation!

We celebrate the very good things that are happening – but there are continuing struggles for many, especially those living very close to our church, just across the Nickel Bridge and beyond to Hull Street and Janke Road area. Public transportation is lacking, the area is somewhat depressed commercially and breeds unease and tension. There is less community there among those recently resettled. There are few vehicles and many are still looking for work. There are more and more instances of depression and other problems as families continue to struggle in their adjustment process.

So, what do we do? We keep on helping one person, one family at a time. Through events like our clothing distribution we are able to show Christ’s love in tangible ways by getting much needed clothing into their hands and homes. Through the offering of special classes and events, as well as our friendship, we are able to offer hope and presence that let these wonderful people know we will continue to be there for them Pray for creative ways to meet needs, to connect and to show we care!

Finally, we want to thank you for continuing to support our efforts in so many ways. By donating needed items, by the giving of your time and skills, by offering your hands and hearts, for praying for us and our faithful volunteers, and for praying especially for these precious people – our New American friends.

 
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