Why are we here?

September 22, 2010

I was reminded this past week how important it is that we come together in the heart of our city to serve our refugee community.  Literally, our ministry is a matter of life or death.

At St. Andrew’s Refugee Services, we have 30-40 Unaccompanied Minors in the Children’s Education Program.  These young men and women arrive in Cairo and do not have the typical forms of adult supervision needed for young of this age.  I learned that one such member of our community donated part of his liver to earn a little extra money, a practice known to provide a boost of money for the poorest of the poor. Complications in the procedure has meant repeated doctors appointments and hospitalizations.  More surgery is needed in the future.  We might read in the newspapers about this practice, but I did not think to realize that this could happen in our own community.

The Unaccompanied Minors program at St. Andrew’s brings these young people into school each school day.  We offer a few of them simple jobs around the programs of St. Andrew’s (photocopying, working in the kitchen, etc.) for a very modest salary.  We help with some transportation costs, too, to assist them in getting to school.  So, with a little earning of money and a good school to attend, we hope that they will not seek to raise money to support their lives in more dangerous means.

Please hold in prayer our community at St. Andrew’s.  We are a home for so many needing a place to be nurtured.  This is not only the case for our congregation, but for the young and vulnerable.  Thank you for helping to make our community strong by your presence, prayers and support.

In Christ,

Pastor Peter Johnson

Some of the children that make of St. Andrew's Refugee Services (StARS) are enjoying their healthy noontime meal. The feeding program of the Children's Educational Program is a part of the important services provided to refugees at St. Andrew's.

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