- a strategic organization of The ACTS Group -

Are Refugees a Threat or a Treasure?

President Trump’s executive order stopping admission of all refugees to the United States for four months has created another furious storm of debate about what and how refugees are vetted and admitted to the United States. The arguments often boil down to seeing refugees as either a threat or a treasure. Refugees have been coming to America since the country’s inception. These most vulnerable have sometimes been preyed upon, sometimes marginalized and sometimes embraced. Undeniably, they have come out of places and situations that are deeply chaotic. They are plunged into a radically different, orderly and hard to understand new world. They are relieved. They are afraid. We want to take this cultural moment to consider again the human reality of refugees in a talk given by Joy Justus of World Relief Sacramento.

The Refugee and Me by Joy Justus

Who is Joy Justus?

Joy Justus has served with World Relief for the last four years. From 2012-2014, Joy worked with World Relief in Indonesia as an English teacher to Middle Eastern and South East Asian refugees who were awaiting refugee processing in a detention center. Since returning to the Sacramento area in 2014, she has been working as a Church Mobilizer with World Relief Sacramento encouraging and empowering local churches to develop mutually edifying relationships with the immigrants and refugees in their local communities and beyond. Joy has a Master of Arts in Theology and Biblical Studies from Fuller Theological Seminary and a Bachelor of Arts in Religious Studies from UC Berkeley.

Expert Voices: Kirt Lewis, Field Office Director for World Relief

Since the late 1970’s, Sacramento has welcomed over 40,000 refugees as their newest neighbors, including approximately 7,500 in the last three years. The Church has played a critical role as agents of hospitality and support over those many years. All involved, including both refugees and the Church, have been forever changed by this beautiful opportunity for the true heart of the gospel to shine in loving relationships. That opportunity is being challenged in a historically unprecedented way by the new Administrations Executive Order. As the Church has been the “hands and feet of Jesus”, now is the time for the Church to be the voice of Jesus for the weary sojourner in search of a new home and hope for the future. We hope that the Church across the US will rise up to this moment and that the legacy of continuing to welcome the stranger as if they were Christ himself will continue (Mt. 25: 27-40).

Real Life Example: Portland, Oregon

Welcoming a refugee is not complicated! Portland area churches are taking simple actions by supplying “restart kits” for those who are arriving. Learn more about the Refugee Care Collective

Refugee Care Collective: "Home"

"The Gospel in a Pluralistic Society" - Convergence "Live"

Convergence “Live” is happening on Friday, March 24 in Sacramento, CA. The theme for this one day gathering of leaders is “the Gospel in a Pluralistic Society.” Topics addressed in expert 9 minute topics will include “Good News for Millenials”, “The Hindu Next Door”, “Jesus at School”, “Cubicle Conversations,” “Talking with My ‘No Religion’ Neighbor”, and “Miracles Can Really Help”. You will have an opportunity to process these talks with other leaders at round tables on how to engage the diversity of people in our lives in ways that lead to spiritual conversations and change. You will have the opportunity to go deeper in questioning the speakers about their content. There will be a morning session from 8:30am-Noon and afternoon session from 1pm-4:30pm. You can register for the morning or afternoon session or for the Full Day, including lunch

To register for Convergence "Live" click HERE

We are building the Convergence team- Interested?

We were excited to add two new members to our Convergence team in January and we have room for a few more. Are you interested in helping Convergence build and connect gospel centered leaders? We are seeking individuals to help with curation, advocacy and event planning. If you are interested, please let us know by emailing us at Our next meeting is in late February.