Loving our Neighbors

Jesus replied, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind. ‘This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.” Matthew 22:37-40 (NLT)
Many of us are very familiar with this passage of scripture, still we sometimes ask, “Who is my neighbor?”  Doing life in the community that is Mission Adelante, we recognize our neighbor is the immigrant and refugee living among us.
You may have wondered, “What’s the difference between an immigrant and a refugee?”  or “How did these people from Bhutan end up in Kansas City of all places?”  A person is made a refugee by the United Nations when they cannot return their homeland, many times because of war or fear of persecution based on race, religion or caste. When refugees are removed from their homeland, they are settled in refugee camps that serve as a middle ground until they can be resettled to a new permanent home, because they can’t return to their previous home.  Refugees are then welcomed in to third party countries, like the United States, and are given a chance at a new life.
The Bhutanese Outreach at Mission Adelante serves Bhutanese refugees.  Our Bhutanese friends are ethnically Nepali, and their ancestors migrated to Bhutan over 200 years ago.  In the early 1990s, the government of Bhutan essentially kicked out all of the ethnically Nepalese people from the country.  The UN stepped in, and set up seven refugee camps on the border of Nepal and Bhutan.  In 2008, the UN began to resettle the residents of the camps in other countries including the US, Canada, Norway and Australia.
There are currently about 400 Bhutanese living in Kansas City, Kansas along with refugees from Somalia, Burma, Iraq and other countries.  When resettled, refugees are assisted by Catholic Charities for a time as they find jobs, and begin to figure out life in America.  The struggle is great for our friends moving from bamboo tents to a major city.  In these struggles, Mission Adelante has the chance to step in and be the hands and feet of Christ to our friends, filling their practical needs and showing them the love of Christ.
Prayer requests:
  • Our 12 Leaders In Training, ages eight through 14, will visit a retirement home once a month during the duration of the school year to spend time with the residents.  Please pray for mutually encouraging friendships to form between the students and seniors.
  • Pray for some changes we're making to the way our Latino church worships.  Pray that deeper involvement and more discipleship will be fostered.
  • Pray for wisdom for leaders during the beginning stage of our Bhutanese house church.
Current needs:
  • Two queen beds, one double bed, a sofa, and a dining table and chairs are needed by Bhutanese families.  Please contact David at 913-281-6274 x6 if you're able to donate any of these furniture items.
  • A dresser has been requested through our Resource Center.  Please contact Molly at 913-281-6274 x5 if you can donate one.
  • We need three iPods for use in Kids Adelante, Bhutanese Kids Club, and the Bhutanese church.  Older iPods are fine; however, we need control of playlists, so Shuffles won't serve our purposes.  If you're able to donate one please contact Morgan at morganh@missionadelante.org or 913-281-6274 x3.
Upcoming dates:
  • The majority of the Mission Adelante staff will travel to the Christian Community Development Association National Conference in Indianapolis October 12-16.  Check out CCDA at ccda.org.  Therefore, there will be No Latino Outreach programs Thursday, October 13.