Seeking Refuge: On the Shores of the Global Refugee Crisis (Paperback)
Recipient of Christianity Today's Award of Merit in Politics and Public Life, 2016
What will rule our hearts: fear or compassion?
We can’t ignore the refugee crisis—arguably the greatest geo-political issue of our time—but how do we even begin to respond to something so massive and complex?
In Seeking Refuge, three experts from World Relief, a global organization serving refugees, offer a practical, well-rounded, well-researched guide to the issue.
- Who are refugees and other displaced peoples?
- What are the real risks and benefits of receiving them?
- How do we balance compassion and security?
Drawing from history, public policy, psychology, many personal stories, and their own unique Christian worldview, the authors offer a nuanced and compelling portrayal of the plight of refugees and the extraordinary opportunity we have to love our neighbors as ourselves.
MATTHEW SOERENS serves as the U.S. Director of Church Mobilization for World Relief. He previously served as the Field Director for the Evangelical Immigraton Table, a coalition of evangelical organizations of which World Relief is a founding member. He is the co-author of Welcoming the Stranger: Justice, Compassion & Truth in the Immigration Debate (InterVarsity Press, 2009), and a graduate of Wheaton College (IL) and DePaul University. Matt lives in Aurora, Illinois with his wife Diana and their two children.
DR. ISSAM SMEIR is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor who specializes in trauma treatment for refugees, victims of torture, and severely abused and neglected children. He holds a Master's Degree in Clinical Psychology from Wheaton College and a Doctoral Degree in Counseling and Clinical Supervision from Northern Illinois University, and has done post doctorate training in trauma and refugee issues at Harvard University. He has worked for World Relief since 2001, serving refugees and other immigrants from dozens of countries of origin. Prior to joining World Relief, Issam worked with several missions and relief organizations. Originally from the country of Jordan, Issam now lives in Suburban Chicago with his wife and four sons.
"Moody Publishers has teamed up with Stephen Bauman, Matthew Sorens, and Issam Smeir for this very timely, very relevant book on the global refugee crisis. The staggering number of people who have been forcibly displaced from their homes is higher today than at any other time in recorded history. This fact puts us all, especially American Christians, in a critical position.
Seeking Refuge provides a Christian perspective to the refugee crisis along with a biblically based response. We are reminded in Matthew 2:13-15 that not long after Jesus' birth, He along with Mary and Joseph were refugees in a foreign land. As pointed out in the book, the Bible contains multiple examples of people who had to flee under the threat of violence or persecution including Jacob, Moses, David, Elijah, and the early followers of Jesus.
What I love most about this book is that it is truly grounded in Scripture. Readers are encouraged to think of refugees as image-bearers of God and as such have inherent dignity and intrinsic worth. They have talents. They are answers to problems in the world. They need and deserve our time, our attention, our resources, our prayers, and perhaps most important of all our love.
Seeking Refuge is very well-rounded in that it addresses so many aspects and viewpoints. The reader gets economic facts and statistics, the processes for volunteers and their organizations, and interesting comparisons of refugees and immigrants. There are stories from refugees and volunteers. Also included is extensive information about the process for refugee entry into the United States.
I believe this book is perfect for churches, anyone interested in volunteer work concerning refugees, as well as the average everyday American citizen. Seeking Refuge addresses the many concerns some have about accepting refugees into the United States, particularly those from the Middle East. The only question that remains is one we must answer individually and as a nation which is: will we live by fear or by faith?"
Reviewed by Ashley Montgomery on NetGalley, Apr 2, 2016