Refugee Resettlement Watch

Guest post: Reader has something to say to World Relief

Posted by Ann Corcoran on November 21, 2016

Editor: Last week one of the nine major federal resettlement contractors responsible for placing refugees in your towns and cities held a post-election webinar to discuss the future of refugee resettlement in the wake of Donald Trump’s victory on November 8th.

World Relief and its fellow contracting agencies have been calling the shots all these years with virtually no Congressional oversight and definitely no assessment of the Refugee program’s value within any previous administration—Democrat or Republican.  All of that could change after January 21, 2017, and they are worried!

For my recent post on World Relief’s financials, click here.

Below is a comment from a former VOLAG (contracting agency) employee who listened in on the webinar and had this to say (subheadings and highlighting are mine):

GUEST COMMENTS ON WORLD RELIEF’S NOVEMBER 18, 2016, 3PM (EST) WEBINAR ENTITLED, “LEADING YOUR CHURCH THROUGH THE POST-ELECTION ENVIRONMENT”

World Relief issued an invitation on a World Relief Facebook page to join the Webinar.  As an evangelical Christian and a former employee of a federal and state funded refugee resettlement agency, I want to share some of the notes I took while listening.

Please read on so you will understand their viewpoint so you can better dialogue with them and others.  I’ve tried to be accurate in using quotation marks so as not to misrepresent or misquote anything said on the webinar.  Keep in mind that World Relief is the humanitarian arm of the National Association of Evangelicals.

emily-gray

Emily Gray

Emily Gray, World Relief Senior Vice President of US Ministries for World Relief addressed Church leaders and others who registered for the webinar on how to “navigate a new environment post-election.”   Scott Arbeiter, President of World Relief, in a reference to Revelation 7:9, spoke of looking forward “to a very real time when people of every tribe and tongue and nation will be gathered around the throne.”  He called on Christians to demonstrate the love of Christ and admitted that many Church members are divided about the recent election results, a condition that is not new for the Church.  He encouraged Church leaders to look at culture through the lens of their Christian faith.

Blaming Breitbart for creating fear?

Dr. Ed Stetzer of the Billy Graham Center for Evangelism at Wheaton College noted that “most conservative evangelicals see refugees as an opportunity for mission and evangelism” and added that “Americans are welcoming and generous people except when they are afraid.”  He immediately referenced Breitbart.com.  I can only assume the implication is that Breitbart.com has stirred up fear.  Is accurate reporting of actual events stirring up fear or just telling the truth?  See http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2015/11/18/report-8-syrians-caught-at-texas-border-in-laredo/ and http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2016/06/22/senate-committee-580-terror-convictions-in-u-s-since-911-380-terrorists-are-foreign-born/.

ed_stetzer

Dr. Ed Stetzer

Stetzer said that five to 10 years ago, evangelicals were committed to serving the “marginalized and the vulnerable” and he dismissed the idea that refugee resettlement is an easy way for terrorists to enter the US, due to the lengthy process refugees go through prior to resettlement.  He said the refugee process is the worst way for terrorists to “sneak in” and the Church must engage these issues in the public milieu.  I would refer Dr. Stetzer to those Breitbart.com articles as well as the following from The Daily Mail, Fox News, and CNN.  Again, is this fear-mongering or just accurate reporting?  Stetzer said that because an “anti-refugee mentality has swept up the country and the mood of the country has shifted,” the Church must have a sense of advocacy.  He mentioned that the means of refugees entering this country is different from Europe in that they “can’t walk in here.”

Trump nominees aggressively anti-refugees

He maintains that evangelical leaders largely voted for Trump in spite of his personality and as a vote against Hillary Clinton and that “most white evangelicals align with the Republican party.”  He noted that most of President-elect Trump’s nominees are “aggressively anti-refugees.”  He enjoined the Church to be driven by faith, not by fear and said that evangelicals have been “co-opted by fear.

James Misner, Senior Vice President at World Relief, referencing the sacraments of baptism and communion and I Corinthians 12 and Galatians 3, said the message is to “value ‘the other.’”

Does Christ want us to love those who would destroy Christians and Jews?

It seems to me that Misner is preaching love of “the other” (a biblical concept, to be sure) but using scripture to imply that evangelicals who are anti- refugee resettlement are opposed to people who are different.  Granted, these scriptures do command Christians to love and embrace each other, and those different from themselves, but I do not believe they command embracing pagan, anti-Christian religions and worldviews which seek to undermine and abolish Christians and Jews!  Yes, Christians are to be unified, but not unified with anti-Christian ideologies (which the refugee resettlement industry is spreading throughout this nation).

Job of the church to resettle refugees, not the government! (Huh!)

james-misner

James Misner

Strangely, Misner said, “We should not outsource welcoming the stranger and serving the vulnerable to the government.”  Isn’t that exactly what “faith based” VOLAGs such as World Relief have done?  Misner never mentioned the hundreds of thousands of dollars that the government grants to WORLD RELIEF and other resettlement agencies to do what Misner thinks is the job of the Church!  Misner quoted Tim Keller, “Unless you believe the gospel everything you do will be driven by pride and fear.”  What a patronizing and condescending use of Keller’s quote!  Many, many Christians definitely believe the gospel and are driven by faith, logic, and sound reason and not by pride or fear, particularly in regard to the fiscally unsustainable, fraud fraught, and dangerous refugee resettlement program.  They are driven by common sense and compassion for a nation and its citizens, present and future!

Emily Gray shared some concerns about that the new government administration would mean for refugees.  She said a concern of already resettled refugees is that refugees who are separated from their family members will possibly face even longer separations if resettlement numbers are diminished but that until the new administration takes office in January, President Obama’s 110,000 presidential determination number of refugees to be resettled continues.

Another issue she addressed is DACA, which, because it is a 2012 presidential executive order and not a law, it can be changed by the incoming President.  According to Gray, 500,000 to 750,000 people receive benefits under DACA and since these benefits may be affected, they are worried!

As a former refugee resettlement worker at a VOLAG, I find it unconscionable that these speakers did not address the serious and valid concerns that evangelicals and everyone else may have about the fraud, fiscal costs to communities, and national security in regard to refugee resettlement and other forms of immigration.

As an evangelical Christian who has supported missionaries, missions, and befriended many, many who are “different” from me, “the other,” the speakers referred to, I find their comments judgmental, patronizing, condescending, and offensive.  I fully agree that Jesus commanded His followers to love and serve all people and not to regard one as better than the other.  However, He nowhere commands me to be complicit in a program that, over the long run, undermines the very freedoms we have in this nation.  I am happy to send my tithes and love offerings to ministries that minister to all peoples.  I am not willing to be taxed for it so the government can pay “Christian” agencies to do what the Church should do on its own.  That is why I fully support a “Defund Refugee Resettlement” movement.

Marilou Kelemen

For other posts in our category ‘Comments worth noting/guests posts click here.

8 Responses to “Guest post: Reader has something to say to World Relief”

  1. There is a wide gap between the thinking of Evangelicals like Keller, Stetzer, & Misner and that of more Conservative Christian thinkers like Franklin Graham, etc. Hard to know what Evangelicalism means exactly.

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  2. 7delta said

    Ms. Kelemen makes her case perfectly in her last paragraph. Christians are not commanded to commit suicide under a misguided belief that using discernment is un-Christian. We can still love and pray for these people and aid them abroad, as appropriate, but the stance of these church leaders make me wonder if they’ve ever read Kings or Judges or understand the Bible at all.

    Whenever God’s people embraced and allowed paganism to flourish, it led to them into being conquered and enslaved. There is a difference between respecting free will and freedom of religion, and inviting in, joining in with, an ideology that conflicts with everything they claim to revere as holy and that intends to destroy us. Why would they not believe God’s Word and why would they not believe Islam when its two only reliable authorities plainly state conquest and enslavement is Islam’s primary goal?

    I can answer this question myself, to a large degree. Our church leaders have failed to do their due diligence. They have never studied Islam from Islam’s own works and words. They’re merely repeating deceptive talking points. They’re projecting their Western Christian world view onto an ideology that is the direct opposite of theirs and that sanctions deceit to achieve its goals. They are allowing themselves and their people to be used.

    Many of our church leaders and their flocks have become lazy and directed by emotion, not by God, or even common sense. They are making a pact with the devil, then calling it righteous.

    To be clear, I’m NOT calling Muslims devils, but since we’re addressing this issue through the religious frame that they chose to use, I’m calling Islam an anti-Christ and these failed church leaders would know that if they followed the Bible, as they claim. John, for one, states clearly how to identify an anti-Christ and Islam meets the criteria easily, plus more. Unfortunately, these leaders don’t know that, because they’ve not bothered to learn the truth. It’s more profitable to not know it, financially and emotionally. If it’s too hard to learn it on their own or to stand up for the truth, then they are not leaders. They’re foolish followers of those who “tickle their ears”…and wallets.

    Church leaders whining about fear-mongering have dismissed God’s Word and have chosen to be “of the world.” They’re politically correct and Biblically incorrect. They claimed Christianity as their “Way”. They own their rejection of it. Church leaders are held to a higher standard than the average Christian. They are to lead toward God, not away from Him, and the Bible says they will be held accountable for the children they lead astray. That’s not my interpretation. That’s what the Bible says, just like I don’t need to interpret the Qu’ran, Hadith and Sira. Mohammed and Allah told us clearly what Islam is. All I needed to do was understand it, since it’s incoherent and contradictory on its face. It takes time and an adjustment of world view, but it’s not hard once you believe what Mohammed and Allah said and did, from their perspective, is what they meant. Church leaders haven’t bothered.

    Lastly, there is no Constitutional authority for the government to pay for immigrants or refugees to come here or to provide for them to live here. The federal government is charged with discernment about who can and cannot enter, in order to protect citizens, our type of government, our rights, our resources and to promote our peace and tranquility. Its authority ends there.

    The private sector is required to aid those who meet those requirements. They accept the full responsibility to help according to what they, their institution or group can bear, financially and in other resources. Using the public treasury is not righteous or compassionate. It’s theft of resources, without the people’s consent. It doesn’t count, o’church leaders. You cannot steal from one person to give to another and consider it a good deed. You cannot force others to support your charity and call it good. It’s good only when done freely. Neither is theft and deceit done in Jesus name or with His blessing. They have been deceived and are deceiving others. They have embraced blindness, are allowing it, encouraging it and lobbying for it.

    The truth isn’t new or a phobia or hate. It just is. The truth sets us free. I did the work to learn and continue daily to dig and learn from original sources. Don’t come around here and tell me I’m not compassionate or loving. If you truly love anything, you love the truth.

    I love the stranger, the Muslim and care about them and others in need, but I cannot be a patsy, then claim to do it in Jesus’ name. It’s dangerously dishonest. Pray for Islam’s chains to be exposed and removed from its captives, work in appropriate ways to aid their freedom from Islam, but selfish leaders using God’s name may not destroy truth and innocents to feed their own false and fleeting feelings of virtue. You cannot witness to adherents of Islam the same way you witness to others. It’s a battle you enter fully armed with knowledge of Islam and with the armor of God. It is the battle between good and evil. If they don’t know why that’s the case, then they are a clear and present danger to themselves and to us. They shame their own names.

    Sorry for the long rant, but I’m pretty disappointed and put out with these false do-gooders. As a PK (preacher’s kid) I am appalled by their reckless disregard of the duties they accepted, their laziness, their emotional drivel, their greed, and their complicity with an ideology that renowned classical Biblical scholars of the past were quite aware of and quite clear about. They shouldn’t be surprised by the truth. They should be appalled by their ignorance and selfishness.

    May God have mercy on us and protect us from false “theologians” who serve the Snake and call it righteous. May God awaken them and grant them mercy in their repentance.

    I’m going to do something constructive now…like polish some sterling cutlery. Forgive me, Ann, for I am miffed and wordy.

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    • Ann Corcoran said

      Enjoyed your rant immensely, just sorry I was away and didn’t get it posted sooner! After the cutlery, maybe work on dusting the lampshades!

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      • 7delta said

        I didn’t get to the lampshades, but I cleaned some dirty floors and dusted, with the help of a young lady who told me, as she was leaving, about her love of Biblical prophesy and what she has learned…on her own…about Islam and about what’s happening to Christians in the Middle East. This young lady (early 20’s) has established a network of ME Christians on her own. She learned from them what it’s like to live under Islam. She’s studied Islam from its original sources. She knows about refugee resettlement and is absolutely correct about the RRP and Islam. She knows of what she speaks.

        She’s coming back tomorrow. I gave her some additional resources today, but can’t wait to give her your website and my white paper. She and her boyfriend are learning Arabic…on their own…so she can read the Qu’ran, Hadith and Sira in its original form. This is the type of person the arrogant left would revile, not only because she doesn’t have an Ivy League degree, but because she doesn’t have a degree post high school, at all. Yet, she’s smart, pretty and hungry for knowledge. Already, she knows more than all these “religious leaders” put together. She’s no cupcake, but is a ball of fire that has worked for her knowledge and her living.

        It’s true, God works in mysterious ways. Can’t wait to tell Con Prof we have a friend that can accurately explain the truth in under a minute. I’m learning to cut to the chase from her.

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  3. Reblogged this on Booksbyjameswnelson and commented:
    “can’t [just] walk in here,” eh? This from Dr. Ed Stetzer of the Billy Graham Center for Evangelism at Wheaton College.
    ****
    I love how people continue “blindly” including muslim “refugees” with regular immigrants.
    “Regular immigrants” come to America because they want to be Americans.
    Most “muslim refugees” come with an entirely different motive, NOT to assimilate at all, but to wait until they are strong enough to take over.
    Don’t believe? Take a look at the history of the ideological non-religion of islam.

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  4. These people feel so free to speak their minds and chastise Christians when I’ll be my bottom dollar that they’ve made NO study whatsoever of Islam or Sharia Law or even HOW refugees (Syrians) are picked and brought into this country. Even a light reading of the Koran makes it clear to any discerning Christian that Islam is opposite of anything Christian – their God is NOT the same God, their Jesus is NOT the same Jesus. Further, Daniel Akbari, a prominent Iranian lawyer (now Christian) has described how Islam moves into countries on two fronts – a peaceful front, in which those coming in seem meek and mild, all the while infiltrating positions of power (as they’ve done in many cities, getting into schools, onto city commissions, etc.) and being allowed to LIE while doing so. Yes – Islam allows LYING if it furthers the cause of Islam and helping to bring about the usurping of our Constitution to replace it with Sharia Law, which is one of their ultimate aims. The peaceful front would be followed by terrorism and war to bring about the conquering of a country, with the final goal to create an entirely Islamic world. Let me ask – would we allow them to take over our church? Would we show the same “compassion” for pagans, witches, Satanists and the like? Would we invite them in to our homes to be around our children? NO – we aren’t supposed to tolerate evil, whatever form it happens to come in. And we aren’t REQUIRED to bring those who happen to be innocent HERE. We can find a place of refuge for them overseas, and demand that countries over there help! What are they doing for their own people? Also – WE HAVE FORGOTTEN OUR TRUE CHRISTIAN BROTHERS AND SISTERS WHO ARE EXPERIENCING GENOCIDE IN SYRIA AS WE SPEAK! Why aren’t these people more concerned about OUR OWN? Not a peep about helping them, as they are pursued, tortured, children cut in half, men, women, children – crucified! We also have, in our own country, the homeless, poverty-stricken, veterans and others that need our help. We can’t even take care of OUR OWN – what are we doing bringing people here that many have said we can’t begin to properly vet? Your compassion, along with your reasoning and blame is MISPLACED!

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  5. tomasrose said

    “Defund Refugee Resettlement” movement. DRR. I think we are seeing the beginning of a movement here.

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  6. Brittius said

    Reblogged this on Brittius.

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