One of our Mission Committee Elders, Larry Cowen has been heading up our effort to help resettle Afghan evacuees. On Wednesday of this week, he received a call and was asked, "If an Afghan evacuee family were to arrive in New Hampshire on Friday night, would you be able to provide what they need to get settled?" Larry and the rest of our Neighborhood Support Team (NST) for Afghan Evacuees thought we would have more time. Still, sometimes God (along with the various agencies handling resettlement) has other plans. So, Larry said, "Yes, we'll be ready," knowing that there would be a scramble.
As you read this, our team members are working diligently to collect items needed to set up a household - furniture, plates, kitchen items, etc. A complete list of items required can be found HERE. (Please sign up for an item and bring them to the church between 12 and 2 pm on Friday, November 5). The team immediately needs hands-on support this Saturday and Sunday to help with moving furniture and loading the truck with items for delivery.
Here's what we know: a family of two parents and two young children who are Afghan evacuees will be arriving in New Hampshire in the middle of the night on Friday night. They will be taken to a hotel, and then on Saturday, they will be taken to their new apartment. The apartment arranged by Ascentria Care Alliance is in Nashua, and BPC's Neighborhood Support Team is the closest team that can provide support.
It is my hope - and the hope of our NST - that when the family arrives, we will be able to greet them and confidently say, "Welcome to New Hampshire. We've got you now, and will support you as you seek to build a new life in a new place," and then follow through, completely, on our commitment. We might not speak the same language or pray in the same way, but the love of God and the hospitality modeled by Jesus Christ is something that speaks beyond a particular language or religion.
I cannot imagine the trauma and confusion endured by this young family over the past several months. But, I can imagine a deep desire for a peaceful and hope-filled new life, and if there are ways that our congregation and those who are working with us can provide this peace and hope, then my sincere hope is that we will go out of our way to deliver it. We are leaning on our NST and experts from Ascentria, to be the "face" of our hospitality with this family from Afghanistan. We hope to find opportunities in the future to introduce the family to the rest of the church.
My thanks to Larry and the Neighborhood Support Team, as well as those of you who will be volunteering to lend a hand in the coming days, weeks, and months. If you would like to lend a hand and become a part of the team, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Grace and Peace,
Prepare for Worship
This Week, Dr. David Pierce, Guest Preacher: “Everybody Loves a Comeback Story” (Pathways to Generosity - Week 2)
- Read Ruth, Chapters 3 and 4
- Read Psalm 127
- Read or sing Hymn # 833 - “O Love that Wilt Not Let Me Go”