Looking for fun activities to do with your RLM Team and refugee family?
(click the event links for more info)
May 3-6: Festival of Nations
June 23: Minnesota Historical Society: Somalis + Minnesota Exhibit
Como Zoo and Conservatory
Minneapolis Institute of Art and Sculpture Garden
Science Museum of Minnesota
Visit a farmers market:
Midtown Famers Market
Mill City Farmers Market
Northeast Farmers Market
Kazi Kubwa, Kazi ya Mungu: Big Work, God’s Work
By Abule and Merin
Translated from Swahili to English
“I came from Africa to America the summer of 2016,” Abule, a 57 year old from the Democratic Republic of Congo explains. Abule shares with me his experience moving to the United States with his wife and three children. “Before arriving, I felt lost. We got in the plane to Minnesota on our own. IOM [the International Organization of Migration] left us alone. They only accompanied us to Chicago. I asked them, ‘What will we do? We will be lost if you leave us.’ They answered, ‘No, you won’t be lost.’” I ask Abule whether he believed the staff of IOM. “Hapana! [No!] I didn’t believe it. It felt like we were being sent to die – me, my wife and children, with no one.”
When I arrived in Minnesota and had someone right off the runway waiting for us, I was shocked. The first person we met was our case manager, Jessica. She was right in the gate off the airplane. She knew my wife’s name and we were surprised. We were both happy and still afraid. We walked with Jessica down to get our bags and saw many people there to greet us.” He stops and points at the wall in the dining room where a framed photo of his family and the Refugee Life Ministries team who welcomed his family at the airport hangs. He smiles and then continues his story. “I looked at Jessica and she was so happy. Everyone was so happy. They helped us with the luggage and smiled a lot.” Have you ever been welcomed like that before, I want to know? Abule scoffs at me and says, “Wapi? [Where?]”
“How did it feel?” I ask him then. Before he can answer, his wife Merina interjects, “We were so happy.” Abule chimes in, “I was so happy. I was SO happy. When I got in the car, although I didn’t know anyone, I knew everyone was doing good work. These people from the church, they came to visit many times, they were the first friends we had in America. They still come and visit us. It’s big work to welcome people you don’t know, you don’t understand. It’s big work to welcome these people. It’s big work, God’s work, a blessing.”
Thank you for your continual prayers for RLM! Join us in praising God for:
- Bethlehem Baptist Church Team 6 welcomed a Karen family of five.
- Maple Grove Covenant Church came alongside an asylum-seeking family of three.
- A New Neighbor was connected to a Ukrainian family of four.
- A New Neighbor welcomed a Somali woman.
Two new staff members who joined our team this month:
Akram Matta is originally from Eygpt, where he began serving with YWAM (Youth with a Mission). He later transfered to work with YWAM reaching out to Somalis in Barron, Wisconsin. He and his wife and two daughters live in Brooklyn Center and attend Substance Church. Akram joins our staff as a RLM Church Team Coordinator.
Kisongo Mbeleulu is originally from Democratic Republic of Congo, where he was involved with church ministries for many years. Kisongo lives in South Minneapolis with his wife and has eight children and three grandchildren. He currently attends and serves with New City of Nations Church. Kisongo joins our staff as the Resettlement and Outreach Coordinator.