I Was a Stranger...

Written by Jason Schoff, Latino Outreach Director

When you go about daily life in the city, you will almost certainly run across people from all reaches of the world.  Every day, more and more immigrants move to our cities seeking new opportunities and we see them in our grocery stores, restaurants, and public spaces like our parks.  Do you ever wonder what life is like for these residents of our city?  The cities we know and love are quite often not easy for foreigners to adjust to.  You can never really understand this reality until you have put yourself in their shoes.  While this might be impossible, Mission Adelante attempts to help staff and volunteers become more and more empathetic as they befriend and build relationships with our immigrant neighbors.

Have you wondered where the idea of "putting yourself in someone else's shoes" originated?  I would put my bet on God's Word.  "I was a stranger and you invited me in" are the words of Jesus in Matthew 25:35.  These words communicate such a strong sense of both hospitality and concern for the stranger and there is no question that foreigners would have to be included in the category of "strangers."  What if God had commented more on this topic with relation to the foreigner?  He actually does, throughout the Bible!  We have been asking our staff and volunteers to join us on a 40 day challenge to read scriptures related to this topic and God has strengthened our resolve to help our immigrant neighbors and friends.  

Knowing God's word better will always help us to make informed and God-honoring decisions.  I would assert that we want to see God honored in the decisions our government makes, including decisions pertaining to our immigrant friends.  What will happen with immigration?  Should the laws be changed?  How should they be different?  The Bible has a lot to say on this!  I want to challenge you to join us in reading through scripture and answering these questions as a kingdom citizen.  You may find the answers will lead you to act on behalf of what God desires.  May God bless you for pursuing Him and his ways.

Join the 40 day challenge here.  

In other news:

  • Although our regular programs were suspended last week for Spring Break, many of our volunteers used the opportunity to get together with immigrants they've gotten to know through serving. Way to go, volunteers!
Prayer needs:
  • Pray for a strong finish to the school year for our current Leaders In Training and that the Lord will bring the right students and families to the informational meetings for next year's LIT on Sunday April 21st.
  • This summer, for the first time, we will be selecting immigrant teens to serve as interns. Pray for our staff as we finalize our summer intern selection.
Important dates:
Please note: The dates of the Latino and Bhutanese Spring Parties are reversed on the "2013 Key Dates" magnets. The dates listed here are correct.
  • Saturday, April 13, 5:00-8:00: Latino Spring Party, at Bethany Community Center.  Please come and help us celebrate the accomplishments of our ESL, Teens, Kids Adelante, and L.I.T. students this trimester and honor volunteers with sustained service. Bethany Community Center is located on Central Avenue in Kansas City, Kansas (66102) between 11th and 12th Streets, behind the fire station.
  • Sunday, April 14, 5:00-8:00: Bhutanese Spring Party, at St. John's Catholic Club and Community Center, 720 N. 4th Street, Kansas City, KS 66101.  Please come and help us celebrate the accomplishments of our ESL, Teens Club, Kids Club, and L.I.T. students this trimester and honor volunteers with sustained service.
  • Saturday, May 4: Bhutanese ESL Volunteer Snacks and Training, at Lauren Timberlake’s house. Please contact Jenny Dunn at jennyd@missionadelante.org for more details.