[Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs press release] You can participate in an important effort to raise awareness of the refugee resettlement work done by The Episcopal Church through “Share the Journey” from Episcopal Migration Ministries.
The “Share the Journey” campaign will highlight the stories of refugees and their resettlement in the United States through traditional and social media.
“Launching on June 16, ‘Share The Journey’ is a year-long effort bringing widespread awareness of refugees and their journey to resettlement,” explained Deborah Stein, Director of Episcopal Migration Ministries. “Everyone can become a companion to refugees, learning about their new neighbors and joining in the journey of resettlement.”
According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, at the beginning of 2013, there were 15.4 million refugees worldwide. This number continues to rise with the recent refugee crises in Syria, South Sudan and the Congo.
Episcopal Migration Ministries (EMM) is an organization of The Episcopal Church that welcomes refugees to peaceful homes and hopeful futures in the US, partnering with faith groups, volunteers, community organizations, and many other local supporters to build a foundation for success for these new Americans.
“Even after arriving in the US, new challenges arise as refugees seek out new connections to rebuild their lives in safety and freedom,” explained Stein. “A strong network of caring neighbors and friends is the foundation of successful resettlement, and Episcopal Migration Ministries and our network of affiliates work to cultivate these supportive relationships in all 30 communities where we welcome refugees.”
Milestones of “Share the Journey” include
• The international observance of the annual World Refugee Day on June 20.
• EMM’s 25th anniversary, as well as the celebration of The Episcopal Church’s 75 years of resettling refugees
• Events at the 78th General Convention in 2015 for those interested and engaged in refugee resettlement.
How can you participate?
On Facebook or Twitter, post a photo of yourself holding a hand-written sign that says #ShareTheJourney with @EMMRefugees. Share with Episcopal Migration Ministries on Facebook or tag Episcopal Migration Ministries on Twitter: @EMMRefugees. Please include the hashtag #ShareTheJourney in your post.
Learn more EMM’s history and how to participate in local refugee settlement here.
Episcopal Migration Ministries (EMM)
Episcopal Migration Ministries (EMM) is the refugee resettlement ministry of The Episcopal Church, helping people uprooted by persecution and violence to find a safe haven and begin their lives anew in the US.
EMM welcomes refuges resettling in the US through a public-private partnership with the federal government, specifically the Department of State, Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration, and the Office of Refugee Resettlement in the Department of Health and Human Services. Throughout its history, EMM has resettled refugees from across the globe. In 2013, EMM resettled more than 4,700 refugees from over 75 countries.
EMM currently partners with 26 dioceses of The Episcopal Church to welcome refugees in 30 cities across the US.
Following World War I, The Episcopal Church established a Bureau of Immigration of the Episcopal Church Board of Missions to minister to new arrivals to America. During World War II, the Department of Social Services of the Diocese of Southern Ohio enlisted other parishes and dioceses to respond to the plight of refugees in Europe. The Presiding Bishop’s Fund for World Relief was an outgrowth of this initiative.
In 1946, The Episcopal Church was a partner with 16 Protestant denominations in founding Church World Service (CWS), resettling refugees as part of the overseas relief and service arm of the National Council of Churches of Christ until 1981. From 1981 to 1988, the refugee work of The Episcopal Church returned to and was carried out as a program of the Presiding Bishop’s Fund for World Relief. In 1988, a new entity – Episcopal Migration Ministries – was established as the Church’s ministry for carrying out resettlement work and providing advocacy and witness on behalf of refugees and immigrants.