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WEA Issues Call to Welcome Refugees

January 29, 2017

New York, NY – January 29, 2017

In light of recent developments related to the ongoing global refugee crisis, the World Evangelical Alliance (WEA) is issuing the following ‘Call to Welcome Refugees’:

    We wholeheartedly affirm the clear teaching of the Holy Bible that the people of God are called by God to ‘love’ and ‘welcome’ the foreigner and stranger (Leviticus 19:33,34 and Matthew 25:34-36).

    We therefore call upon the worldwide body of Christ to reflect the heart of God and to actively love and welcome refugees.

    We call upon Christian leaders and pastors to deepen their biblical understanding of forced displacement and to intentionally minister in ways intended to create space in the hearts and minds of others for refugees.

    We call upon Christians everywhere to pursue a biblically informed perspective of forced displacement and to actively seek the welfare of refugees.

    Recognizing that the global refugee crisis is putting great pressure on governments, we call upon Christians to pray for wisdom for government leaders involved in refugee-related policy-making.

    Affirming article 14 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights1 that states,

“Everyone has the right to seek and to enjoy in other countries asylum from persecution;”

    affirming the preamble of the Convention and Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees2 in which it is written,

“Considering that the grant of asylum may place unduly heavy burdens on certain countries, and that a satisfactory solution of a problem of which the United Nations has recognized the international scope and nature cannot therefore be achieved without international co-operation;”

    and further affirming Article Three of the Convention in which it is stated,

“The Contracting States shall apply the provisions of this Convention to refugees without discrimination as to race, religion or country of origin;”

    we call upon the governments of signing nations to clearly honour these international agreements as they respond to the challenges and pressures of the global refugee crisis.


Signed:
Bp Efraim Tendero, Secretary General of the WEA; Comm. Christine MacMillan, Associate Secretary General for Public Engagement who heads up WEA’s Refugee Task Force; Tom Albinson, WEA Ambassador for Refugees, Displaced and Stateless People.


1 UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights
2 UNHCR Convention and Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees


See also:

> The Refugee Highway: helping the Church seek the welfare of the world's 65 million forcibly displaced people – with resources for local churches

> WEA Encourages Churches to Embrace "Welcoming the Stranger: Affirmations for Faith Leaders" – Jun 20, 2013

> WEA Establishes Special Task Force on Refugee Crisis to Coordinate Global and Grassroots Response – Sep 27, 2015

> WEA Refugee Task Force Calls for Prayer and Support for Local Churches Serving Refugees at the Front Lines – Oct 27, 2015


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MEDIA CONTACT:
Timothy K. Goropevsek
Chief Communications Officer
timothyg@worldea.org
+1 212.233.3046 x149


Over two billion Christians in the world today are represented by three world church bodies. The World Evangelical Alliance (WEA) is one of those, serving more than 600 million evangelicals. Launched in 1846 to unite evangelicals worldwide, the WEA continues to be a dynamic movement with 7 regional and 129 national Evangelical Alliances, and over 150 member organizations. WEA's mission is to establish and strengthen regional and national Evangelical Alliances, who in turn enable their national Church to advance the Good News of Jesus Christ and effect personal and community transformation for the glory of God. For more info, e-mail wea@worldea.org or go to Worldea.org.