Monthly Mingle for Migrant Families
In May of this year over 300 migrant families from Central and South America were moved into Wilbur Wright College for the summer. This college is right down the road from our church (Cornerstone Anglican Church) in Chicago’s Portage Park neighborhood. Both Fr. Kyle Oesch and Catechist Joel Brown felt that we should invite our congregation to explore what it would look like to transform our July Monthly Mingle (a regular monthly post-service gathering in our church) into an opportunity to love and serve our new neighbors.
On Sunday, July 23, we met after church at Merrimac Park and invited those families to come join us for a time of food, fun, and fellowship. We have a few members of our congregation that are fluent in Spanish who helped make connections with the dozens of migrants who came. We were also blessed to be joined by the Vargas family and our friends from Mission Cornerstone in Oak Park, as well as Cn. William and Anne Beasley, for this outreach.
Members from Cornerstone also brought jugs of laundry detergent to share with the migrant families as we were told that was their biggest need. We had some Spanish New Testament copies that we handed out as well.
A week after our event, the families that were living at Wilbur Wright were relocated to the American Islamic College in Chicago’s Uptown neighborhood. In God’s providence, this is where our sister Diocesan congregation Immanuel Anglican Church gathers on Sundays! On the Sunday following our Monthly Mingle, Immanuel hosted a similar event to welcome the migrants to their new location, and the Immanuel continues to serve them now through opportunities like ESL classes. Our Monthly Mingle for Migrant Families has had a lasting impact on many in our congregation, giving them an imagination for ways we can care for other sojourners in our midst. And it has inspired our faith to see how Jesus can use different parts of his Body in a city to share his love with our neighbors.