Presbyterians Today

OCT-NOV 2017

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26 OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2017 | Pr e s by te r i a n s To d ay L oan Nguyen waited anxiously at the airport for the arrival of a Syrian family that had traveled 13 hours from Jordan. The family, displaced by war in Syria, had spent more than two years in a refugee camp, trying to find a new home. The couple and their two small children were entering a country they did not know, and they had no idea what to expect. Nguyen knows the feeling well. Over 30 years ago, she and her family traveled to the U.S. from Vietnam. "I remember being on a plane for so many hours. When we arrived, we were tired. It was a rainy night," she said. "I was 6 years old and we arrived at Chevy Chase Presbyterian Church in a van. The church had food for us and toys to play with. Right away, I remembered the feeling of being safe. We weren't running anymore." Chevy Chase is one of more than 1,500 PC(USA) congrega- tions that provided some form of refugee support in 2016, according to Presbyterian Disaster Assistance. Congregations in 35 states and Washington, D.C., are engaged in refugee ministry. Approximately 2,000 congregations have asked for more information from PDA on how they can begin or extend their Opening doors and hearts Churches welcome refugee families BY RICK JONES GETTY IMAGES

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