Members of the TWU community have been and continue to be involved in responding to the refugee crisis. Here are some stories of groups and individuals affiliated with TWU who have made a difference.
Keith & Melissa Reed
In November of 2015, we were invited to be part of a group of Canadian families who had the goal of sponsoring a refugee family to Canada. We rarely follow local news stories and our knowledge of international events is limited, so we knew very little about the worldwide refugee crisis outside of the fact that there was one. However, as we discussed this invitation we knew that our family needed to take action.
Our decision to be part of this sponsorship group is one that we have come to call a decision of cerebral obedience. In our minds, we knew that a worldwide refugee crisis demanded a response of some kind on our part. Our thoughts went to the teachings of Jesus who commanded His followers to love others as themselves and to serve the least of these. In our hearts felt God calling us to respond in this particular way, so we obeyed.
We anticipated a lot of work and we prepared for it. Since our roles on the team were finances (Keith) and household goods (Melissa), we created spreadsheets and collected blankets, couches and dishes. Our minds were ready to do what needed to be done. Little did we know that when our sponsored family arrived in November 2016 that our cerebral obedience would turn into incredible joy.
When our 6-year-old son learned that our group had finalized a rental suite for the family, something that all of us had been praying for, he joyfully shouted, “God did it!” Despite her expression in the picture, our 4-year-old adores their oldest daughter, loving to climb into her lap, hold her hand, and spend time with her. And this Christmas we were overjoyed to see the family set up a Christmas tree in their home for the first time in 4 years, below it carefully displayed a small nativity set that had travelled with them from Syria to Armenia to Lebanon and now their home in Canada.
Keith (’03) and Melissa (Kroeker ’03) Reed
TWU Staff Working Group
TWU faculty have formed a working group that, in coordination with other local community-based resettlement groups and initiatives, is aimed at providing space for friendship, research, student awareness, public learning, and dialogue.
Randy and Lore Wollf
Randy is a professor at ACTS Seminary and him and his wife Lore are TWU alumni. He is a recent recipient of the Servant Leadership Alumni Distinction Award for the work he has done with refugees. To read more about his story click here, and to watch a video about him click here.