We are all well aware of the suffering that the Syrian people are experiencing. Their homeland is in ruins. Bombs are being dropped and there are limited safe havens for refugees. Many countries refuse or are reluctant to take them. This includes our own. Fortunately, there is a trickle of Syrian refugees who have survived the arduous vetting process and have come to our community. Yet, new immigrants to Rhode Island from war torn countries, like Syria, have a particularly difficult time adjusting to the demands of life in America.
The vetting process for Syrian refugees is draconian and severe. Most refugees arrive with only the shirts on their back. For a woman, widowed by the ravages of war and now a single mother caring for three children, it is particularly difficult. Refugees often arrive penniless because they have left behind whatever resources they may have had. Selling a house, destroyed by artillery is not an option. In many towns and cities there is no economic and legal infrastructure to accomplish such a transaction.
There is something you can do to help. I would like to invite you to join us for dinner April 27, from 6 to 8 PM at the Mosaic Restaurant in Cranston to raise funds for Syrian refugees in Rhode Island. The proceeds will go to A Hope, a Rhode Island based refugee resettlement organization. Perhaps you could share the attached flyer and tell your congregation about this effort. Perhaps your congregation could make a small donation. Perhaps you could join us for dinner yourself. Let us care for our new but vulnerable neighbors. Every family should have the opportunity to live with dignity and we can help.
PS You may notice that we are using EventBright to allow for the purchase of tickets and to make donations. If your organization would prefer to send a check please make the check out to A Hope and mail it to Dr. Margaret Paccione, 579 Phenix Avenue, Cranston, RI 02921.
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The Rev. Dyszlewski is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ. He currently serves as interim pastor at Lime Rock Baptist Church in Lincoln and as Community Minister at First Unitarian Church Providence. He is chairman of the Religious ...