World Vision U.S. President Edgar Sandoval Sr. learned something true of all people: Nobody wants to leave home and the people they love. It’s tough to start over in an unfamiliar and often unwelcoming place, where you’re not treated the same as others and you have to work twice as hard for everything. But his situation was a far cry from the way some people leave their homes today.
Two-time Olympian Lopez Lomong, a Lost Boy of Sudan, was kidnapped and imprisoned, spent 10 years in a refugee camp, and was eventually adopted by a U.S. family. Today, he continues to run and to raise funds and advocate for clean water and South Sudanese refugees.
Since Aug. 25, 2017, more than 700,000 people from Myanmar have fled to Bangladesh because of extreme violence in northern Rakhine state. Most identify as Rohingya, a Muslim minority ethnic group. Impoverished and living in camps, they depend on aid for survival.
There are more refugees in the world than ever before, and their needs have never been greater, not only for the basic necessities of life, but for hope and opportunities to be self-sufficient. Find out more about the global refugee crisis.
You won’t find the word “refugee” in the Bible, but there are principles in God’s Word for how his people are to treat those who are called “strangers,” “foreigners,” and “sojourners” in our translations. In Matthew 25, Jesus says that how we treat “strangers” indicates whether or not we are his followers. Disciples’ behavior should include hospitality to strangers. And the New Testament epistles use the term “strangers” as a metaphor for our status before we professed faith in Jesus Christ.
More than 68.5 million people worldwide have been forcibly displaced. Why did they flee, where are they going, and what can be done to address the plight of refugees, especially children?