Diocese of Saskatoon

Our Faith in Action - Refugee Sponsorship

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Refugee sponsorship, hospital chaplaincy, prison ministry:

Your gift to the Bishop’s Annual Appeal is Reaching Out in Love

In the wake of a tragic accident or a devastating diagnosis, hospital chaplains are on hand to offer prayer, spiritual support, and a compassionate listening ear. Those in prison find hope and healing through outreach offered through the diocesan Restorative Ministry Office. Refugees fleeing war, violence and persecution are welcomed by parishes and groups who undertake private sponsorships with the help of our diocesan Office of Migration.

Funded by your gifts to the Bishop’s Annual Appeal, these ministries are putting faith into action, responding to Christ’s call to reach out in love to those who are suffering or in need.

The Office of Migration has grown out of the diocese’s decades-long role as a government-approved Sponsorship Agreement Holder. As a SAH, the diocese plays a lead role in offering training and coordination to parishes, organizations and family groups that are undertaking private refugee sponsorships. 

Refugee sponsorship is about responding to Christ’s call to welcome the stranger, says Migration Office  coordinator Sofia Berumen. 

“The reason we have volunteers and sponsoring groups is that most of them have received and responded to that call... you can actually see what happens when they put their faith in action,” she says. “You can actually see people’s lives changed.”

Kieu Wieu (right) came to Canada as a refugee with his wife after fleeing the horrors of the Sudanese war. After years of waiting to come to Canada, Kieu was finally able to pursue his dream of getting an education, first attending high school and then the University of Regina. He is now a social worker helping children in a northern Saskatchewan school division. A proud Catholic and a Canadian citizen, Kieu and his parish (Our Lady of Lourdes in Saskatoon) have co-sponsored six of his family members to come to Canada after they were displaced by the most recent war in South Sudan, including (left to right): Alek and Achuil Anguei (siblings of Kieu’s wife) and Kieu’s nephew Ager Wieu. Kieu says that without the help of the diocesan Migration Office and Our Lady of Lourdes, he couldn’t have helped his family members find safety and a new life in Canada. “Thanks to you, these young people will pursue their dreams, they will finish their education, and they will be able to help Canadian society,” Kieu says. 

 

“We have been blessed with so much, I just think that we need to share that and open our community to people who are less fortunate... The Office of Migration has been a huge asset for us ... It has been very helpful to have somebody to say: ‘this is what you need to do, this is how you follow these steps’.” - Refugee sponsorship committee member Alison Dale, St. Augustine, Saskatoon