The Franciscan Friars’ Ministry of Hospitality continues to expand at Holy Cross Retreat Center in Mesilla Park, New Mexico. Over the past few years, the Center welcomed people in need of temporary housing, including those navigating the US immigration system. Refugees from Afghanistan were welcomed last summer, as well as teams of volunteers who were helping them settle in the US.
On February 10, the Friars welcomed 15 members of an extended family from the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They were in a refugee camp in Tanzania for about ten years, and just recently received permission to come to the US. There is one man who knows some English so that helps a lot, but communicating with the others is a challenge. Eager to cook their own type of food, the refugees have worked through an interpreter to learn safety features necessary for a commercial kitchen, open flames, boiling water, and other things.
Friar Tom Smith, the Director at Holy Cross, says:
This month, the Ministry of Hospitality was featured in America Magazine. You can read the article at: