Not since the Second World War has the number of refugees been so great. Each year our diocese warmly welcomes refugees into our communities. After fleeing persecution, refugees are able to thrive and enrich Canada because they were protected, welcomed and offered care. Globally, there are almost 20 million refugees many of whom are awaiting resettlement.
Our diocese has come alongside those seeking protection for over a decade. Through our Private Sponsorship Agreement with the Canadian government any of our congregations as well as affiliated ecumenical or community groups can become sponsors for overseas individuals or families who are classed as refugees. While sponsorship represents a significant commitment, there are a variety of options available to interested groups to make sponsorship both affordable and manageable. Unfortunately at this time our capacity to support family-linked sponsorships is extremely limited due to restrictions on the number of applications we are able to submit to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada.
Public support for refugees is another way of ensuring that Canada continues to be a safe haven for refugees and that our tradition of care and compassion and justice remains strong.