Back in September 2015, a 3-year-old Syrian boy named Aylan Kurdi drowned after a 15-foot boat ferrying him to a Greek island capsized. Pictures of the toddler’s lifeless body on a beach horrified millions around the globe and caused many churches around the world to act.
As Christians, we are called to welcome the weak and vulnerable into our communities. Hebrews 13:2 admonishes us to open our homes to those who need it—refugees in flight from terror in our day. Jesus commanded his followers to welcome people who had no social standing, such as the poor, the sick, and the outsider (Luke 14:12-14).
This unfolding tragedy can leave us all feeling rather helpless. Of course we can donate money to the usual charities, but this can still leave us feeling a bit empty and a feeling that we could be doing more? But now there is a new channel to do exactly that, under the Home Office’s Community Sponsorship Scheme. This allows community groups such as parishes to sponsor and house refugee families in their neighborhoods. This scheme has already been signed up to by Caritas in 8 other dioceses’ in England and Wales and we are delighted to announce that Caritas in our own Portsmouth Diocese has also signed up, now offering your parish the same opportunity to house a refugee family.
To get into the details of how your parish can practically house a refugee family Caritas has organised 2 repeat seminars where more information will be provided:
15th September - Sacred Heart Parish, Waterlooville, PO7 7SR - 10am-4pm
29th September – St. Joseph’s Parish, Maidenhead, SL6 7EG - 10am-4pm
More information and registration
Let's end with the encouraging words of Bishop Philip “Let everyone see that our Diocese of Portsmouth has opened its doors in Christian love to people from some of the most troubled places on earth, in particular from Syria. Through these actions, we will witness to the love of Jesus working through His Church and to our profound respect for every human.
Get in touch with Kevin Gallagher via email at: email@example.com
Mailing address: Caritas, Administration Offices, Bishop Crispian Way, Portsmouth, PO1 3QA