Love the Stranger

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The New Testament word for “hospitality” comes from a compound of “love” and “stranger.” Hospitality has its origin, literally, in love for outsiders.

Strategic hospitality strategizes how to make the hospitality of God known and felt by those God has put in our spheres of influence. And so we invite in the outsider. We welcome them into our space, all in hopes of bringing Jesus into theirs. Because we love them.

“Our love for outsiders runs deep as it flows from remembering ourselves to be outsiders who have been dearly loved by a lavishly hospitable God.”- John Piper

Through New City’s Shine partnership at Mission Ave Elementary, we have been serving “the outsider” through our Newcomers Program. This is academic assistance for refugee students who are just learning English. We plan to continue this program through the summer as we partner with New Beginnings Church. This partnership will eliminate the need for transportation and allow us reach them where they live.

We have developed meaningful relationships with our Newcomers and prayed for ways to also serve their families. Catholic Charities has developed a Program called “Team Refugee.” Through this program, a group of 5 adult volunteers will be matched with a refugee family in need to provide friendship and support. Teams will be matched with a family for a minimum of 6 months. They will meet with the family on a regular basis and will help the family with three main goals--English practice, job search assistance, and general cultural orientation.  This is the hospitality of the New Testament. It is love of the stranger. It is deeply relational as volunteers enter the lives of a family in crisis and offer them friendship and love. What an amazing opportunity.

“As Christians we love the stranger, because we have been loved by the Father when we ourselves were strangers.” – John Piper

Catholic Charities would like for us to partner with them through Team Refugee to further serve the refugee families God has placed at Mission Ave. Elementary. It is our goal to create teams of New City volunteers to work through Catholic Charities to support the families of our Newcomers at Mission Ave.  Catholic Charities will provide extensive training and support for these teams. They have a long history of serving this population and will guide us with their expertise. This is about relationship. It is an opportunity to truly get to know a family of outsiders and show them the love that Jesus has extended to us.

Will you prayerfully consider being a part of our work with refugees at Mission Ave?

-Volunteers are needed for our summer program and our Newcomer program at Mission Ave. that will begin again in the fall.

-Teams are needed to provide support to families through Team Refugee. Your team will attend a training with Catholic Charities in the fall and be matched with a family.

Contact Lisa Fuller- Shine Director