The Episcopal Church General Convention in Indianapolis in July was a critically important moment in the life of the Church. For Episcopal Migration Ministries (EMM), General Convention was an opportunity to engage with Episcopalians involved and interested in ministry to refugees in the past, present and future. We reunited with two former EMM directors, connected with staff and parish volunteers who had served new arrivals dating back to the 1970s, and shared the ministry with many who approached us with fresh eyes and enthusiasm for getting involved, including many receiving this newsletter for the first time.
Through an informational luncheon and a reception honoring supporters from Christ Church Cathedral, Indianapolis, for their support of our partners at Exodus Refugee/Immigration Inc., we sought to lift up the contributions of churches and encourage even greater support in welcoming vulnerable refugees to our shores. The General Convention also passed a resolution in support of a modernized refugee resettlement program – Resolution B028 proposed by Bishop Prince Singh of Rochester – which will inform the advocacy work of our colleagues in the Office of Government Relations as they pursue a program that best serves refugees and the communities that welcome them.
Our time in Indianapolis was both productive and inspiring, as the deep-rooted, church-wide commitment to welcoming the stranger in our midst shone through yet again.