Written by the Rev. Dr. Duncan Hanson
During the last several months, Mediterranean Hope, the refugee and migrant project of the Federation of Protestant Churches in Italy, has been recognized for its work at various church meetings in Europe. Last month, Mediterranean Hope received its first recognition at a national church meeting in the United States, by Global Ministries of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and United Church of Christ.
Mediterranean Hope has been acknowledged by a North American mission agency for its courage and faithful witness, including its work with Humanitarian Corridors, an initiative of Italian Christians which helps refugees with demonstrable humanitarian needs to enter Europe safely and legally as well as for its work welcoming migrants and integrating them into Italian life.
The Award of Affirmation was given by Global Ministries, the shared mission agency of the United Church of Christ and the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), at the General Assembly of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) which just concluded in Indianapolis, Indiana.
In giving the award, Global Ministries cited Mediterranean Hope’s “for their presence and witness in God’s mission, enabling God’s people and creation to share in God’s abundant life.”
In accepting the award on behalf of Mediterranean Hope, Marta Bernardini, a Mediterranean Hope refugee worker, said: “We are honored to accept this award from one of our important international partners. Together, as people of the church, we seek to break the isolation and despair which often seems overwhelming, each of us reminding the other where we want to stand and what values we want to fight for.”
The theme of migration and refugees was also featured at the General Synod of the United Church of Christ a few days earlier in Baltimore.