After my recent trip to Oaxaca, Mexico, I’m so excited to introduce you to Tess Clarke. We process some of what we learned on the trip to visit refugees from Central and South America and hear about the work Tess and her husband are doing with their non-profit, Seek the Peace.
Tess feels called to a ministry of presence in the same way that Jesus enters into our lives. It doesn’t mean that the circumstances are changed, but He takes away our aloneness, our guilt, our shame and our fear by being present with us in those hard circumstances.
The numbers are staggering and everyone knows that this is an overwhelming issue. Which is why I think we can’t become jaded and paralyzed, but we have to keep looking at it from a human point of view. When we were in Oaxaca, a lot of it was really about learning why people were fleeing and what their lives looked like and what they were hoping for when they came to the United States. Every person I had an opportunity to talk to said, ‘I want to be safe.’
No matter where you may fall politically on the issues of immigration and the current refugee crisis, I think Tess’ perspective on entering into the broken places and loving the marginalized and lonely around us can bring us together as believers. It has made a big difference in my own parenting when I invite my kids into loving others.
Something my kids and I talk a lot about is the line in the Lord’s prayer, ‘Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.’ And we asked Jesus, show us where heaven is not. Show us where heaven is lacking. Lead us there because we want to join you in that space and we want to do what we can to bring heaven there.
What we chat about:
- Tess, her family, their non-profit Seek the Peace and her role at We Welcome Refugees
- The work Tess and her organization have done at the border.
- Seeking to understand the plight of refugees and the work and role of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)
- Family separation of refugees at the border and the humanitarian crises happening in Central and South America that are causing an increase in the number of refugees
- Stories from refugee centers at the border of South Texas
- Tess feels called to a ministry of presence in the same way that Jesus enters into our lives.
- The trip Heather and Tess made to Oaxaca, Mexico to visit refugees there
- A poem by Warsan Shire about why people leave their homes as refugees
- The legal ways to enter America are being shut down by the current administration
- Our experience visiting the unaccompanied minors shelter
- Femicide, being killed because you are a woman, is a big cause of death in Mexico
- Partnering with Jesus to love the marginalized and bring Heaven to Earth
- The call of God to love the oppressed and care for the broken in Isaiah 58
Connect with Seek the Peace and We Welcome Refugees:
- Seek the Peace
- We Welcome Refugees
- Seek the Peace Shop
- Global Immersion Project: https://globalimmerse.org
- Join the Welcome Private FB group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/welcome.womengroup
- Justice Curriculum for Kids: Text “WeWelcome” (one word) to 44222
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