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Year of Service: Serving our Neighbors

The Episcopal Diocese of San Diego (EDSD) has embarked on a Year of Service with a particular focus on Migration Ministry in the month of June. EDSD is rallying its community to make a meaningful impact on the lives of migrants, asylum seekers, and refugees. Embracing our Christian call to show hospitality to strangers, the diocese is preparing multiple ways you can participate. In short, you can volunteer, give, and/or donate desperately needed basic materials. There is also a unique opportunity on June 25 to visit Tijuana and witness firsthand the challenges and resilience of those affected by the border situation.

The call to love and serve our neighbors, extending a helping hand to those in need is central to our lives as Christians. The Epistle to the Hebrews reminds us to show hospitality to strangers, as in doing so, we may unwittingly be hosting angels. The Episcopal Diocese of San Diego embraces the responsibility to serve migrants, asylum seekers, and refugees.

Every year on June 20, the world celebrates the strength and courage of people who have been forced to flee their home country to escape conflict or persecution. This year, the Episcopal Diocese of San Diego is especially dedicated to serving migrants in June. This intentional focus aims to address the immediate and pressing needs of individuals and families affected by the migration crisis. Recognizing the complexity of the situation and the ever-changing circumstances, the diocese, led by Migration Missioner Robert Vivar, wants to provide practical assistance and support to those in distress.

The Episcopal Diocese of San Diego is offering three primary avenues for individuals to contribute and make a meaningful impact during the Year of Service and specifically during June’s Migration Ministry focus:

  1. Volunteer: Those with a heart for service and specific skills, such as legal, mental health, or medical expertise, are encouraged to volunteer their time. By offering your professional training, you can provide invaluable support to migrants, asylum seekers, and refugees in need of legal assistance, mental health care, or medical attention. Volunteers become the hands and feet of compassion. Bring hope and help to those navigating challenging circumstances by signing up to volunteer.
  2. Give: Financial contributions play a vital role in supporting the mission and activities of Migration Ministry. Generous donations enable the diocese to provide essential resources, services, and aid to individuals and families in desperate situations. These contributions help meet immediate needs. Your gifts empower the diocese to respond promptly and effectively to emerging challenges. www.edsd.org/give
  3. Donate Needed Materials: Tangible donations of goods can help those stranded with little more than the clothes they’re wearing. Clothing, food, and toiletries contribute directly to addressing the urgent needs of migrants, asylum seekers, and refugees. There is a desperate need for old (chipped) smartphones, which serve as a valuable tool to apply for an entrance interview through the new CBP-One phone application.

The Service & Learning Trip, scheduled for June 25, offers individuals a chance to engage in hands-on service and gain a deeper understanding of the challenges and resilience of those impacted by the border situation. Participants will have the opportunity to visit various locations, including the Deported Veterans Office, Casa De Luz (LGBTQ shelter), Friendship Park, and a migrant shelter. Through active service, you will contribute to meal preparations, engage with the Border Church community, and assist with essential tasks like garden beautification.

By visiting Tijuana, you not only provide practical, on-the-ground aid, but you cultivate empathy and compassion for those affected by migration. The experience fosters personal connections, breaks down stereotypes, and allows for a genuine exchange of stories and experiences. It is an invitation to transcend borders and engage in meaningful relationships with our neighbors in need.

The call to serve our neighbors is deeply rooted in Christian teachings. The Epistle to the Hebrews reminds us of the significance of hospitality, for in extending kindness to strangers. Embracing this call, the Episcopal Diocese of San Diego channels the values of love, compassion, and solidarity to alleviate suffering and promote justice for migrants, asylum seekers, and refugees.

As the Episcopal Diocese of San Diego continues the Year of Service, we ask that the diocese responds to the Christian call of hospitality. Through volunteering, giving, donating needed materials, and joining the opportunity to visit Tijuana, we can extend compassion and make a lasting impact on the lives of those in distress, echoing the words of Hebrews 13:2…some have entertained angels without knowing it.

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Category: #Advocacy, #Migration, #Multicultural Ministry, #Outreach, #Service

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