Refugees are people who have been forced to flee their home country and, are unable to return because they are at risk for persecution due to race, nationality, religion. The moment arriving refugee families step off the plane, everything is new and unfamiliar. Each new day presents a series of challenges, They now have to learn how to become self-sufficient. The culture is new, language is new, foods are new, and the way we dress is new. They are alone in a strange place. Many come to seek better opportunities for their children.
The resettlement process is not new to the Lititz congregation. The challenge to furnish housing is a priority, along with helping to learn the basics of life in America. Topics like health and hygiene, safety, budgeting, immigration status, laws and cultural practices all must be met. Employment becomes a top priority. As the refugees become settled in a close bond is formed as they become a part of our community.
Currently, we are sponsoring three Karen families from the Burma-Thailand. Many have spent as much eighteen years in refugee camps. It has been a joy to see them grow in the Lititz Community. Many have taken their citizen tests and are now American citizens.