An Aspiring Architect Paints from Baghdad to Philly – Through Courageous Eyes  Published 11/21/2014 in REDEFINING WELCOMEThroughCourageousEyes300x300

Today’s guest post is by Mayyadah Alhumssi, an Iraqi painter now of Philadelphia, whose work includes scenes from both Baghdad and Philly. Mayyadah works with the Philadelphia Refugee Mental Health Collaborative, which is a program of Lutheran Children and Family Service (LCFS). LCFS is... more

President Obama to Announce Executive Action Tonight  Published 11/20/2014 in REDEFINING WELCOMEPresident Obama Speech 300x300

At 8pm EST tonight, President Obama will unveil his highly-anticipated executive action on immigration. The potential administrative reforms would include temporary protections to stabilize the lives of millions of deserving people living in the United States. While we do not know the exact details... more

'Creating Culturally Diverse, Yet Integrated Community'-- A Former Refugee From Ethiopia Shares his Vision  Published 11/20/2014 in REDEFINING WELCOMEFesseha300x300

Today, I'm delighted to share a guest blog post from Fesseha Bekele, an LIRS World Refugee Day Academy participant and bold advocate for Ethiopian and Eritrean... more

HEADLINES: Border Crisis — November 19, 2014  Published 11/19/2014 in REDEFINING WELCOMEStatueofLiberty300x300

As we await President Obama’s executive action, immigration detention facilities continue to open across the nation, and families are torn apart because of deportation. Millions of people who are living in constant fear and uncertainty because of their status, as well as thousands hopelessly... more

This National Adoption Month, Participate in the Bethany Forever Family Campaign to Raise Awareness for Foster Care  Published 11/18/2014 in REDEFINING WELCOMEFosterCare300x300

In recognition of National Adoption Month this November, I'd like to call attention to the nearly 70,000 children who crossed into the United States alone this year, seeking safety. At LIRS, we believe that the best way to ensure unaccompanied migrant children are both safe and equipped for a... more

'Permanent and Beautiful' A Young Artist Finds His Voice in Art -- Through Courageous Eyes  Published 11/14/2014 in REDEFINING WELCOMEThroughCourageousEyes300x300

Today we have a guest post featuring the story and photography of Beto Soto, one of the youth involved with The AjA Project of San Diego. The AjA Project uses a model of participatory photography to give youth a voice in their communities and position them as change-makers. This blog is... more

Sanctuary, Obama, and Politics — Top Picks of the Immigration and Refugee Blogosphere  Published 11/14/2014 in REDEFINING WELCOMEStatueofLiberty300x300

People of faith across the nation are continuing to live out the call to welcome the stranger through supporting their neighbors most in need. They set a perfect example for Congressional representatives and the White House to follow in their search for solutions to fix our broken immigration... more