We’re excited to introduce you to the newest member of our team, John Lamont! John joins us having just graduated with a history degree from Williams College in Massachusetts. He has a strong interest in immigration and environmental law, and the prevalence of immigrant and refugee stories in political news over the past few years has really raised his awareness. John also feels a personal connection to refugee resettlement through his grandfather, who came to the United States as a refugee from Lithuania in the 1950s.
It’s pretty incredible that in one generation, Raahmo has the kind of small-world Minnesota stories that weave together her life, family, and career.
Our LVC volunteer Emily shared this story about a family she met last summer:
Miriam’s varied life experiences have come together in a unique way to equip her for her new role as a Refugee Employment Counselor with MCC Refugee Services. Miriam was raised in a Mennonite family who valued hospitality and making room for outsiders, and that has deeply shaped her interests and values.
MCC Refugee Services in Mankato recently agreed to partner with an initiative of the Minneapolis Synod ELCA working to combat predatory payday lending in Minnesota communities. Payday loans are small loans, usually less than $500, that charge a high interest rate and must be repaid in full by the next paycheck. Families without financial margins can become easily entrapped in a devastating cycle of payday loans.
Blue Earth County has the 3rd highest rate of payday loans per capita in Minnesota and the statistics are staggering. For example, in 2018 there were:
Ta may be one of the newest faces in the MCC Refugee Services office, but she’s not really new to Refugee Services.
Members of the Delta Phi Omega Chapter in the Twin Cities made a generous donation of grocery gift cards for particularly vulnerable families who arrived with refugee status this year. These gift cards provided tangible support and the encouragement of welcome to each of these families. But how did the sisters in this chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha come to make the donation? Every donation has a story, a point where the donors heard about refugees and decided to take action. We wanted to share a bit of that story with you, as told by their president, Mary Dedeaux-Swinton.
Jami joins the MCC Refugee Services team in a newly-created role coordinating cultural orientation classes for new refugees arriving in the Twin Cities.
The name of the innkeeper who made room in his stable for Mary, Joseph, and Jesus doesn't appear in the Bible, but I bet that Mary and Joseph never forgot, and that he never forgot the miracle that occurred that night in his barn. And what about all of the other innkeepers in town? Do you think they regretted their decision to close the door?
We all know the familiar story of Christmas--Mary and Joseph, wandering from inn to inn on the verge of giving birth, finding every door barred to them.