Sunday, September 29, 2013

Share Their Stories

Amidst politically driven and socially divided opinions about asylum seekers and refugees in Australia emerge remarkable stories from beautiful people who restore a sense of humanity to the discussion.  Here is a snapshot of a few real stories that are indicative of others that are being discovered by those taking the time to positively engage with people seeking to call Australia home:

Ali & Sarah came to Australia about 18 months ago from Iran on a student visa looking for religious freedom.  As cultural Muslims they were tired of living under oppressive Islamic law and believe Christianity to be a religion of "peace and freedom."

Haluel is a refugee from Sudan who escaped the war of Sudan when she was a child and spent 12 years in a refugee camp in Kenya before embarking on a dangerous and complicated journey towards settlement in Australia.
Ihab & Amaal recently left the conflict in Egypt on a tourist visa and are looking for refugee status in Australia due to persecution from a Muslim landlord that led to false charges against them.  They lament the current turmoil in their country and the burning of their Christian churches.

Athula was a Buddhist man who left political persecution in Sri Lanka because he supported the opposition party.  Since seeking asylum in Australia Athula connected with our church, had a revelation of Jesus and is now a Christian man.

Farzana is a student from Afghanistan who is studying a Diploma of Community Services to serve and support asylum seekers and refugees in Australia.  She now volunteers at The Salvation Army and is assisting to establish a multicultural playgroup.

Tahir is a Muslim from Pakistan who is an active member of his local Islamic Community Centre who has a heart to engage in inter-faith dialogue with Christians.  He is a gracious man who wants to deepen the understanding between each others faith perspectives.

These are real people, with real hopes and dreams, facing very real adversity!  Share their stories and stop the dehumanizing of people seeking the same basic human rights that we celebrate and defend in this country.

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