Mission Crossroads

SPR 2017

Mission Crossroads is a three-time-a-year magazine focused on worldwide work of the PC(USA). It offers news and feature stories about mission personnel, international partners and grassroots Presbyterians involved in God's mission in the world.

Issue link: https://missioncrossroads.epubxp.com/i/776898

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Page 22 of 23

God's mission in Europe Making a life-giving difference for refugees PC(USA) mission co-workers Ryan and Alethia White work alongside the Iranian Presbyterian Church (IPC) in Berlin, Germany, to reconcile relationships across cultural, religious and political divides. e IPC serves as a point of contact for migrants from Afghanistan and Iran and provides opportunities to share God's love for all people. Recently a few area churches have joined IPC in collaborating to open a "Connections Café." Although the café is new, Alethia says it holds great hope. "We are optimistic the café will provide space for people from the church, a local refugee camp and members of the German church communities to connect, build relationships and better understand one another." Being the hands and feet of Christ by connecting migrants and refugees with pastoral care, medical and social services and legal help is a passion of the Whites, who have served in Berlin since 2013. In the midst of uncertainty for asylum seekers, Ryan and Alethia see small signs of hope, such as joy expressed when individuals share testimonies of feeling peace and calmness during their lengthy asylum interview, which they attribute to the presence of Jesus. Of course, the Whites also see discouragement of asylum seekers, given the length of time they must wait for a decision and the challenges of life, language, housing and employment in another culture. Despite the challenges, most asylum seekers are eager to begin a new life. Support Ryan and Alethia in Germany. pcusa.org/donate/E200500 God's mission along the U.S.–Mexico border Putting faith into action Omar Chan serves as facilitator for the Presbyterian Border Region Outreach (PBRO), assisting in faithful, effective mutual mission to address the root causes of poverty, to work for reconciliation amid cultures of violence, and to share the good news of God's saving love through Jesus Christ at ministry sites along the nearly 2,000-mile U.S.-Mexico border. During Lent last year Omar and his wife, Amanda Craft, were asked to help plan a binational communion service at Anapra Crossing, in Anapra, New Mexico—a site of historic significance where families and loved ones on both sides of the border come to be present for one another and to touch each other between the links in the fence that separate them. e U.S. Border Patrol monitored the gathering but did not once interrupt the respectful worship service of prayer, singing, Scripture reading and communion. Communion was served in both Spanish and English as two worlds came together in that transformative moment. Omar and Amanda have learned that true mission isn't born out of a sense of charity, but rather in speaking with truth and love. "We want to work with our ministry partners to find how God's justice can be realized," they say. Support Omar on the U.S.-Mexico border. pcusa.org/donate/E200512 Mission Crossroads 21

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