By Marion Wolff

One month ago, our Syrian family arrived in Calgary.  For over two years, the family of six had lived in a Syrian refugee camp in Jordan, and now they are living in a new home in a new country. What a culture shock they must be experiencing: a new language; a colder climate; urban living with heavy traffic, seat belts, and children’s car seats; unfamiliar food and accommodations.  As well they have health and job concerns. And probably the most difficult of all they have no extended family or people they know from the past in Calgary or even in Canada.
This past week the Canadian Government reached their goal of accepting 25,000 Syrian Refugees.  Along with that news we see photos of families sitting in hotel rooms in Canadian cities, including Calgary, waiting for rental accommodation. As a participant of the St. Andrew’s, Deer Park, McDougall and Scarboro United Churches Syrian Refugee Initiative I am proud that we chose to step up and make a difference for at least one family.
We are especially appreciative that a friend of one of the members of our church and his partner recognized the need for housing for refugee families and provided rental accommodation for the family in a home that wasn’t being used and seemed like a good fit. It is one more example of the kindness and generosity of spirit that people are offering to refugee families.
Last week while I was visiting at the home of the family I saw that the father had hung up two   small Arabic hangings on the wall in the living room. Heexplained with actions and a little English the one hanging asked God to bless his home.

“There’s no place like home.”