Welcoming Afghan Refugees

“For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink.  I was a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me.  I was ill and you comforted me, in prison and you came to visit me.  I assure you, as often as you did it for the least among you, you did it for me. “

Matthew 25:35-40

Many of us feel called to do our part to welcome the stranger; particularly as we witnessed the US withdrawal from Afghanistan and the massive US mission to relocate thousands of Afghan allies.  

“I have never been a refugee but I have lived in a foreign country where I was all but illiterate.  I feel very strongly that we are called as Christians and as a Minnesota church to provide help for families who are fleeing intolerable conditions in their homeland. “

Kirsten Lincoln, Mission and Outreach Team Member

Mission and Outreach has been working to keep track of what is happening in our area.  We have approved a $1000 gift to LSS Refugee Resettlement Services.  LSS works closely with Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services.  Many of the refugees coming to MN through LSS will be resettled in Minneapolis or St. Cloud. 

LIRS

https://www.lirs.org/refugee-resettlement/

To Learn More About LSS’s work and ministry with refugee resettlement:

“We are still concerned about families’ safety because of the freshness of the evacuation /danger so the details will be a bit sparse from us. I can let you know that the money will go to support the rent of an Afghan family of four –  mom, dad, and two small kids. Stable housing is crucial to getting started in the US so please know that this gift made a big impact in their lives. Thank you so much!!”

Cate Duin, Supervisor, LSS Refugee Services

In Rochester and SE Minnesota, Catholic Charities is the entity helping to resettle thousands of Refugees sent to Fort McKoy, WI.   With the intention, to support the refugees resettling in our area, Mission and Outreach has approved $200 in gift cards for Catholic Charities.   

To read more about resettlement in Fort McKoy, WI:

https://apnews.com/article/wisconsin-afghanistan-taliban-ea4617d35618f1f6e70491475852b0db

Catholic Charities of Southern Minnesota Logo

How Can You Personally Participate In This Work?

We invite you to welcome Afghan Refugees to MN with a gift to either LSS or Catholic Charities.

Greater MN: Refugee Services | Lutheran Social Service of MN https://www.lssmn.org/services/refugees

Refugee Resettlement Program – Catholic Charities of Southern Minnesota (ccsomn.org)

Catholic Charities Rochester, MN Office

903 W Center St, Ste 220

Rochester, MN 55902

(507) 287-2047

Immediate Needs can be delivered to the Catholic Charities Rochester Office:

  • 50 and $100 Walmart or Target gift cards
  •  Men’s backpacks
  • Women’s purses – large enough for document folders
  • Men’s and women’s wallets
  •  Document holders-multi or single
  • Spiral Notebooks
  • Solid colored folders
  • Pens and pencils
  • Bottled water

At this time, it appears that the families will be arriving individually, not in large waves as we thought at first. Catholic Charities has not received any specific dates, but here is a general outline of what volunteering opportunities you can expect and when. The first 30 days after arrival will primarily be for Grocery Group – replenishing highly used items, Donation collections such as clothing of appropriate sizes, and Transportation with shopping assistance for items such as phones and shoes. After the first month, we will need Assistance with Move-In to an Apartment, Family Mentoring, Tutoring, and Driving Coaches.


Kari Allen, Catholic Charities Refugee Resettlement

Apply to be a volunteer for Catholic Charities Refugee Services :

Refugee Resettlement Volunteer Application – Catholic Charities of Southern Minnesota (ccsomn.org)

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