World Refugee Day, June 20

World Refugee Day, June 20

  Disciples World Refugee Day Resources
  United Church of Christ World Refugee Day Resources

“When was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you?” – Matthew 25:38

World Refugee Day – June 20, is a day to lift up refugees displaced by war, civil unrest and persecution, all of which tear away at the fabric of human community.


Of the eleven million refugees in the world today, seven million have been “warehoused,” in camps or segregated settlements for 10 years or longer. In camps, refugees live in crowded conditions in some of the most remote and inhospitable living conditions. Refugees are not allowed to grow their own food. Nor are they allowed to earn an income for their labor. They survive on meager food rations and water that is trucked in or wells which are dug for them. Waiting in line for water is a major activity of the day. Tents and temporary structures become permanent homes. Safety is not assured. Refugee camps are not safe places to raise a family and yet many children are born there. While refugees wait for the opportunity to return home, locally integrate or be resettled, they stagnate, become dependent, lack stimulation, lose motivation and even hope resulting in a tremendous waste of human potential.


There are several ways you can help refugees

  1. Bring attention to the issue of refugees. Find a day to lift up refugees at your church. Worship resources are available at:
         Church World Service
         United Church of Christ
    Refugee Facts
      • 11.5 million: Number of refugees & asylum seekers worldwide
      • 7 million: Refugees who’ve spent 10+ years in camps
      • 21.3 million: People forcibly displaced in their own countries
      • 58,813: Refugees resettled in the U.S. in Fiscal Year 2005
      • Middle East: Region with the largest number of refugees
  2. Welcome refugees through the refugee resettlement program. Both the UCC and Disciples of Christ work in cooperation with Church World Service. They provide direct orientation for congregations interested in welcoming a refugee to your community.
         United Church of Christ
  3. Provide support to refugees around the world by giving generously to the One Great Hour of Sharing and Week of Compassion offerings. You can give through your local church or online.
  4. Advocate for fair refugee and immigration legislation. Please join us in calling on Congress to pass compassionate immigration reform that includes a pathway to citizenship, emphasizes family unity, and protects the human and civil rights of immigrants to the U.S.!
         Global Ministries statement regarding immigration issues
  5. Links
      World Refugee Day – UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency
      Church World Service
    Church World Service and its member denominations, including the UCC and Disciples of Christ, provide help and homes to refugees, and work to build a hospitable community in the United States for uprooted people. Each year, CWS resettles about 8,000 refugees and entrants in the United States, with congregations and affiliate agencies providing services locally. UCC Refugee Ministries helped resettle 711 refugees in 2005. In refugee camps in Africa and Asia, CWS provides health care and post primary education through its Durable Solutions for Displaced People program. You can help welcome refugees and be a part of the solution overseas providing support for refugee programs abroad.