Archive for April, 2009

Touched by Burma

This last Saturday, I showed up for a meeting about Austin Refugees. Growing up, I had a friend whose family had fled Vietnam. Their transition into American culture wasn’t exactly smooth. I still love Tony, but we’ve not talked since high school… if really even then. I’d never really thought through nor come to grips with his family’s struggles. It’s very much to my shame.

I showed up just to determine how Westover might be able to work with Austin Stone (a huge college church plant) in this. I thought this was a planning meeting. Instead, I got an emotional rollercoaster. Sitting beside a few of the refugees, occasionally a man my age would lean over during the videos and say something like “yes, that happened many times”. My heart is still reeling from the experience. Every few hours I find myself praying anew.

A couple from Westover, Jonathan and Jessica, teach ESL classes for a small group of Karen Hilltribers; driven out of Burma, encamped in forced seclusion just inside Thailand, and finally transported to the U.S. The meeting presented numerous possibilities to help, but discovering which is what I’m wondering about now.