Celebrate World Refugee Day & Refugee Welcome Sunday!!

Disciples Refugee and Immigration Ministries invites Disciples from around the country to honor refugees and asylum seekers on or near to World Refugee Day, June 20th.  We also encourage congregations to lift up refugees in worship, by sponsoring a “Refugee Welcome Sunday” on or near to June 20–and multiple resources are available to assist congregations to incorporate refugee themes in their worship services, take action to support refugees, build community partnerships with refugees, and celebrate ways of engaging with refugees in resettlement and other forms of welcome in their communities!

ESPECIALLY THIS YEAR, when the United States is seeking to restore its US refugee resettlement program (which has been reduced by more than 85% in recent years), faith partners are needed more than ever to answer God’s call to “welcome the sojourner” (Dt. 10:19) who may be “angels unawares.” (Heb. 13:2)

Below are some key resources to assist you and your congregation:

  • Find multiple resources for your worship planning and refugee celebrations and advocacy on these two pages:

Disciples Refugee Welcome Sunday and World Refugee Day: June 20th page

Planning Resources for Refugee Welcome Sunday page

  • Find and Download our Disciples 2021 Refugee Welcome Sunday Worship and Planning Resources Toolkit from the site here, which contains many pages of worship resources, a sermon starter, refugee themed prayers, stories of Disciples work with refugees, a Children’s Sermon, game, top advocacy actions to take now to support refugees and asylum seekers, and much more!
  • See here our Disciples 2021 “Top 5 Actions” Toolkit to Support Refugees and this Faith Vigil Toolkit to End Title-42 & Support Asylum Seekers
  • Find here our collective Faith Partners World Refugee Day 2021 Toolkit, which contains Refugee Voices, Welcome & Resettlement Opportunities, Faith Community & Partner World Refugee Day Resources, Worship Materials, and Refugee Advocacy Resources.
  • We are also offering a first-ever multi-faith partners “Virtual Refugee Worship” for World Refugee Day will be held on Monday, June 14th, from 7-7:30 p.m. Please sign up here to receive the link to join—and invite others to join!

Refugee Welcome Sunday 2021

Be sure to SIGN UP to let us know and promote how you’ll be honoring refugees and immigrants in your church and community!!

June is an especially appropriate time to lift up refugee and immigrant contributions and challenges, since June 20th is World Refugee Day.  This year, it is also Refugee Welcome Sunday! 

In December 2000, the United Nations General Assembly established that “Refugee Day” would be celebrated each year on June 20th, and encourage local communities to select time and ways near this date to honor the strengths and contributions of refugees in their areas. 

We hope YOUR congregation can join other churches around the country to celebrate your community’s welcome for Refugees and Immigrants ON JUNE 20th (or another Sunday near that time!)  See this full Disciples 2021 Refugee Welcome Sunday Planning and Worship Resources Toolkit, and this page of resources, too!  And, for the “Top Five Ways” you and your congregation can support refugees, see here our Disciples Take Action for Refugees 2021 Toolkit or go to: http://bit.ly/RefugeesWelcomeToolkit.

Contact our Refugee & Immigration Ministries office for more ideas or information, at: sstanley@dhm.disciples.org.  Especially, consider supporting refugees with the power of your advocacy voice.  

And, be sure to SIGN UP to let us know how you’ll be honoring refugees and immigrants.

Below are some resources to help you in planning your events and worship to celebrate refugees!:

  • Disciples recently joined with all Church World Service and National Council of Churches partner communions in March of 2021 to issue a new “Ecumenical Declaration:  Protecting Welcome, Restoring Hope” in support of refugees and immigrants–which summarizes many key commitments to restore welcoming for refugees and asylum seekers.
  • See this Faith Partners 2021 World Refugee Day Toolkit for even more faith community resources to support refugees and asylum seekers!
  • Plan now to TAKE ACTION that shares your support for refugees by signing and delivering these Refugees Welcome/Restoring Welcome Postcards to your national, state, and local leadership offices!  Download and send to the Administration at: President Joe Biden, The White House, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20500, and to your US Senators and US Representative. Find your Representative, and click on their name for their website to find their physical address.
  • Also, please share  these Disciples graphics on social media that celebrate how Disciples have long been committed to welcoming refugees!  Like and tag Disciples Refugee & Immigration on FB at: http://bit.ly/RIMFacebook, on Twitter: @StanleyRea, and on Instagram as sharonstanleyrea, then download and share the images on your social media, with sample posts you can find in the “Disciples Take Action for Refugees 2021 Toolkit” linked above.                                                                                                                                              
  • You may also wish to hand out this “Immigrant Prayer Card” in your worship, Sunday School, or other gatherings to encourage prayer for immigrant neighbors. Tape a few sunflower or other seeds to each card before distribution.
  • SUPPORT the ongoing work of Disciples Refugee and Immigration Ministries to strengthen refugees and immigrates every day! Designate to “RIM” a ministry of DHM at: https://www.discipleshomemissions.org/product/donation. Also, you may mail your contributions to Disciples Home Missions, PO Box 1986, Indianapolis, IN 46206-1986.
  • Go here to find the closest refugee resettlement office to your area, and contact them to arrange for a refugee speaker.  Reach out to a local immigrant congregation in your area, or contact our office to assist in inviting a local immigrant rights leader to speak. Look here for a map of the resettlement offices. For additional resources go here.