ADVERTISING
 
Wednesday, October 17   Sign in or Register
 
Evangelical Focus
 
Flecha
 
ADVERTISING
 
 
FOLLOW US ON
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Google +
  • Instagram
  • Soundcloud
 

Newsletter
Newsletter, sign up to receive all our News by email.
 
 

POLL
Languages
How many languages do you speak?




SEE MORE POLLS
 

 
TOP 10 MOST VIEWED



Refugees in Europe
 

“The idea of family is very important for Arab refugees”

Usama Hanna (MEOS, Switzerland) believes churches in Switzerland and across Europe “are opening up to integration.” He emphasises the importance of “praying for and with the refugees.”

AUTHOR Joel Forster , Belén Díaz CATANIA 19 MAY 2016 17:04 h GMT+1
refugees, Europe Syrian refugee students listen to their school teacher during math classes. / World Bank

Many refugees arriving in Europe come from Syria, fleeing the war there. Most of them have a Muslim background, and try to survive in a culture very different from what they left behind.



Usama Hanna (MEOS, Switzerland), explains that, although many refugees's “desire to integrate is quite weak”, they still have want to be part of “a family, they want to be accepted.”



According to Hanna, “the church has a big role in integration, because it can give the love, the acceptance which helps and gives a good environment for refugees to integrate.”



He believes that “churches are opening up [...] I see glimpses of hope, integration is happening, at least in my community.”



Read Usama Hanna´s full interview below.





 



Question. How do asylum seekers feel when they first arrive to a country in Europe?



Answer. When refugees come to Europe, they come with a lot of challenges. They are very hurt, they are very tired and they need time to adjust to the new environment where they come to live in. They first need recognition, to be received.



 



Q. What are some of the challenges for refugees?



A. Basically the language, that is a big challenge for refugees when they arrive. Since I came to Switzerland, I realised there are many projects for integration but seldom you see a successful one.



I met with many refugees and they are still focus on how much they can get, and their desire to integrate is quite weak.



 



Q. What is the role of the Christian churches?



A. I believe the church has a big role in integration, because the church can give love, the acceptance, which helps and gives a good environment for refugees to integrate.



Integration means to come together, and we cannot come together unless we are on a common ground.



 



Usama Hanna, during the interview. / Joel Forster



 



Q. Can you give us examples of Christians getting involved with people coming form the Arabic world?



A. In the last months, something is growing. The churches are opening up, and I experience in our community a work of togetherness. I see glimpses of hope, that integration is happening, at least in my community.



I have another relationship with another church in another Canton, where the church adopted an Arabic church. There are good relationships between Arabic speaking and Swiss people there.



We have also a small example that started a year ago. With the help of the Swiss Evangelical Alliance, we started a home in Bern, where we host 12 refugees. It is a pilot project of how the church can get involved in the area of integration, by connecting these refugees with the Swiss community.



 



Q. Finally, what first steps should we take to connect with a refugee coming form a Muslim background?



A. To connect with the Arabic speaking people or Muslims the idea of family is important. The Arabs want to be in a family, they want to be accepted. If we go back to Ishmael, he was dismissed from the family, and that is why yo see this violent reaction in the Islamic world.



There is a key point here: if you receive the people in the family, and care for them, that will open a big door to connect with them. To pray for them, with them, that will open the door too.



When you see someone in the street, and you see that he is need, and you just ask him if you could pray for him, this will... I have had these experiences, you fiund people crying when you pray for them, the Holy Spirit touches their hearts.



 



The “Refugees in Europe” series of articles is the fruit of a cooperation between Evangelical Focus, the Refugee Highway Partnership in Europe and the EEA Hope for Europe – Refugees campaign.



 




 


POLL
Refugees in Europe
How are Christians in your country responding to the refugee crisis?
Individuals and churches are getting involved helping in many practical ways
37%
Some churches are offering help, others 'sit on the fence'
29%
Most churches openly say the 'wave' of foreigners is dangerous for European and Christian values
11%
Not many refugees have arrived to my country yet
23%
This Poll is closed.
Number of votes: 127
SEE MORE POLLS
 
 


0
COMMENTS

    If you want to comment, or

 



 
 
YOUR ARE AT: - - “The idea of family is very important for Arab refugees”
 
ADVERTISING
 
 
 
AUDIOS Audios
 
Nominal Christianity, a mission field for the church Nominal Christianity, a mission field for the church

An interview with Lars Dahle, of the Steering Committee of the Lausanne Movement Global Consultation on Nominal Christianity held in Rome.

 
Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation

Are Christians called to make a difference in environmental care? What has creation care to do with "loving our neighbours"? An interview with the Global Advocacy and Influencing Director of Tearfund.

 
Kathy Bryan: Online sex trafficking in the USA Kathy Bryan: Online sex trafficking in the USA

“Prostitution is nobody’s dream,  it’s a very traumatic lifestyle”, says Kathy Bryan, director of the Elevate Academy. She mentors former victims.

 
Christians in politics? Christians in politics?

What is the role of Christians serving in politics? An interview with Auke Minnema, the new General Director of the European Christian Political Movement (ECPM).

 
PICTURES Pictures
 
Photos: Reaching people with disabilities Photos: Reaching people with disabilities

Seminars, an arts exhibition, discussion and testimonies. The European Disability Network met in Tallinn.

 
Photos: Hope for Europe Photos: Hope for Europe

Unity in Diversity is the theme of the conference. Representatives of Evangelical Alliances and many other church leaders gathered in Tallinn (Estonia).

 
Sharing Jesus with World Cup fans in Moscow Sharing Jesus with World Cup fans in Moscow

A team of Steiger mission is starting conversations about the gospel in the middst of the football celebration in Russia.

 
European “Bridges to Inclusion” gathering 2018, in Riga European “Bridges to Inclusion” gathering 2018, in Riga

The network of Christian ministries working for the inclusion of people with disabilities, celebrated its tenth continental meeting in Latvia with the participation of 12 countries.

 

 
VIDEO Video
 
Biotechnology: “There is a difference between restoration and enhancement” Biotechnology: “There is a difference between restoration and enhancement”

“We have to understand the times in which we live, and have discernment”, says Doctor Peter J. Saunders.

 
The Manzanas case The Manzanas case

A short documentary about how retired pastors and widows of an evangelical denomination in Spain fight a legal battle for their pensions after the favourable ruling of the European Court of Human Rights.

 
How does romantic love change over time? How does romantic love change over time?

Psychatrist Pablo Martínez uses a metaphor to explain how romantic love evolves.

 
‘Mediterráneo’ ‘Mediterráneo’

“Something will change if you have hunger and thirst for justice”, sings Spanish artist Eva Betoret in a song about the refugee crisis.

 
How the loss of universal values led to a loss of civility How the loss of universal values led to a loss of civility

Author Bruce Little: “We have moved from a sense of responsibility to ‘my personal rights’”.

 
 
Follow us on Soundcloud
Follow us on YouTube
 
 
WE RECOMMEND
 
PARTNERS
 

 
AEE
EVANGELICAL FOCUS belongs to Areópago Protestante, linked to the Spanish Evangelical Alliance (AEE). AEE is member of the European
Evangelical Alliance and World Evangelical Alliance.
 

Opinions expressed are those of their respective contributors and do not necessarily represent the views of Evangelical Focus.