LOVING OUR NEIGHBORS

HOW TO HELP AFGHAN REFUGEES 

"For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in." -Matthew 25:35

"When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not mistreat them. The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt." -Leviticus 19:33-34

We believe in the work of joining together to love our neighbors in tangible ways. We are called to love the stranger and have the opportunity to do that in our area as refugees are being resettled from Afghanistan. We hope to be collaborative neighbors and join in the work that organizations who are experts in the field and are trained in responding to crises like this one. You are invited to donate, act, advocate, pray, and stay informed using the resources below as a guide!

Act Now: Generosity and Missional Giving

Burke UMC donated $2,000 to Lutheran Social Services in response to the resettlement efforts in our area as refugees began arriving. This money will go directly to supporting with basic housing and food needs as people journey through the long process of transitioning to life here in the US.

 

Would you like to add to the donation total? If so, you can donate online or mail a check to Burke UMC with the memo: refugee and we will include it with our next donation. We will update the number on the website here weekly so you can see how much money has been donated!

TOTAL MONEY DONATED AS OF 9/8/21: $5,275

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DONATE:

ACT:

  • Volunteer with Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services

    • If you are able to volunteer your time to help with services like airport pick-ups, apartment set-ups, or bringing a meal, please sign-up through the form using the link above

    • To learn more about LIRS, click here

ADVOCATE:

  • International Rescue Committee

    • Use this online form to urge the Biden administration to take immediate steps to ensure "vulnerable Afghans have pathways to safety."​

PRAY:

A prayer for Afghanistan 


The Prophet says, You know the plans I have for you, says the Lord; plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to offer you hope and a future.

Gracious and holy God,

We come to you with the situation in Afghanistan heavy on our hearts. It is a situation so complicated, and so fast moving, that it is difficult for us to know what to say or how to think.

We hold before you the people of the country, those who stay and those who flee; those living with terror and afraid for the future; those who, because of this latest turn of events, will never be able to live the fullness of life that is your purpose. We hold all this before you.

We hold open to you the future: the world leaders with a role in shaping what happens next; the many who are becoming refugees and the people who will be called upon to offer them safety and a future; the impact of these local events on our world story. We hold all this open to you.

We hold in your love all those known to us whose lives have been bound up in the recent story of Afghanistan. We think of all those who have served there in the Armed Forces, those who were injured and those who did not return. We hold in our hearts all those for whom this is a time of special grieving and confusion, and those who minister to them. We hold all these in your love.

Rock of ages, at this difficult time we lean into your timelessness.

Turn us, and all people, to your good purposes for your world. Grant courage and wisdom, hope and a future.

Amen

Barbara Easton, Vice-President of the Methodist Conference in the UK

STAY INFORMED:

  • No One Left Behind

    • No One Left Behind is the only nationwide nonprofit committed to ensuring that America keeps its promise to our allies and their families who risked their lives for our freedom

  • Resources to Help Afghan Refugees: Virginia Conference of The UMC​​

    • A compilation of helpful resources for individuals and congregations​

  • Fairfax County Afghan Refugee Information and Resources

    • ​Fairfax County is working with nonprofits and faith communities in assisting Afghan refugees who will eventually call the county their home. Afghan refugees have experienced significant trauma, uncertainty and stress during the evacuation process. It is Fairfax County’s priority to ensure that individuals and families who resettle here can access services as quickly as possible so that they can focus on rebuilding their lives and establishing support networks in the community. Click the link above for resources and more information.

  • Catholic Charities: Diocese of Arlington

    • Learn about the work Catholic Charities is doing and get involved!​

  • Ethiopian Community Development Council

    • Learn about the work of the ECDC and how to support their efforts.​