#ShareTheJourney pilgrimage to highlight refugee work of the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society

Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs
Posted Jan 29, 2015

[Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs press release] Join #ShareTheJourney with Episcopal Migration Ministries (EMM), the refugee resettlement service of the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society, and eight Episcopal pilgrims as they participate in an 11-day pilgrimage to the Great Lakes region of Africa.

#ShareTheJourney is designed to raise awareness of ways in which the Missionary Society, through EMM, works to facilitate refugee resettlement work throughout The Episcopal Church.  The pilgrimage is funded through a Constable Fund grant awarded last year by the Episcopal Church Executive Council. The Constable Fund provides grants to fund mission initiatives that were not provided for within the budget of the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society passed by the General Convention.

“Through the #ShareTheJourney pilgrimage, we are bringing awareness to the plight of Congolese refugees and the ministry of the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society in resettling refugees from Congo and other conflict areas,” explained Deborah Stein, EMM director. “Through real-time social media, our participants will serve as the eyes of the church as they witness conditions where refugees are currently living, and the responses we offer through resettlement.”

Through the #ShareTheJourney pilgrimage from March 2-13, stories of refugees and their resettlement in the United States will be highlighted through traditional and social media.  During the pilgrimage, participants will share their experiences through blogs and posts here.

The pilgrims will travel to Nairobi, Kenya and Kigali, Rwanda. Among the planned visits are the Kigali Genocide Memorial Centre and the Gihembe Refugee Camp in Rwanda as well as operations supported by Church World Service’s Resettlement Support Center (RSC)-Africa, and the UN refugee agency UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees).

The pilgrims
Participating in the pilgrimage are:
• Jessica Benson, Diocese of Idaho
• Spencer Cantrell, gender violence fellow, National Immigrant Women’s Advocacy Project (NIWAP), Diocese of Washington
• Cookie Cantwell, Province IV Youth Ministries Coordinator, Diocese of East Carolina
• The Rev. Canon Scott Gunn, Executive Director, Forward Movement, Diocese of Southern Ohio
• The Rev. Canon Frank Logue, Canon to the Ordinary, Diocese of Georgia
• Vicki Logue, Diocese of Georgia
• The Rev. Burl Salmon, Middle School Chaplain and Dean of Community Life, Trinity Episcopal School, Diocese of North Carolina
• Alyssa Stebbing, Outreach Director, Trinity Episcopal Church of The Woodlands, Diocese of Texas
The Missionary Society
• Deborah Stein, Director, Episcopal Migration Ministries
• Kurt Bonz, Program Manager, Episcopal Migration Ministries
• Wendy Johnson, Communications Manager, Episcopal Migration Ministries
• The Rev. Ranjit Mathews, Network Officer for Mission Personnel and Africa
• Lynette Wilson, Editor/Reporter, Episcopal News Service

How can you participate?
• Through #ShareTheJourney on Facebook or Twitter through @EMMRefugees and #ShareTheJourney.
• Participate through interactions, retweets and posting a photo of yourself holding a hand-written sign indicating: #ShareTheJourney with @EMMRefugees.

Episcopal Migration Ministries
Episcopal Migration Ministries is the refugee resettlement service of the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society. Each year this ministry works in partnership with its affiliate network, along with dioceses, faith communities and volunteers, to welcome refugees from conflict zones across the globe.

#ShareTheJourney as the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society celebrates 75 years of resettling refugees in the United States. #ShareTheJourney is a multi-media effort to educate, form, and equip Episcopalians to engage in loving service with resettled refugees and to become prophetic witnesses and advocates on behalf of refugees, asylees, migrants, and displaced persons throughout the world.

Check out the website here and here.

Learn more EMM’s history and how to participate in local refugee settlement here.