12 Laurie McFarlane Davies (right), Northminster Presbyterian

Last spring, Laurie Davies and a team of committed people heard God’s call to welcome refugees to the Chicago area. Launching a campaign at Northminster Presbyterian Church, they created public awareness materials and distributed information, taught children about refugees (in a tent), and served the congregation an international meal. Their efforts inspired others. One couple requested donations to the Refugee Project in lieu of wedding gifts, and the choir soloists and music director gave a benefit concert. Together, they raised enough money to co-sponsor a refugee family through Refugee One and collected enough household goods to furnish the family’s apartment.
The sponsored family, a young Syrian couple and their four small children, who fled to Jordan in 2013 after Assad arrested and killed various family members, arrived in July. Mentors have met weekly with them since then.

Today, the father has a steady job. The older children are in school, and everyone is learning English and making friends in their new Chicago home.

Laurie thanks God for the enthusiasm of the Northminster family in making this vision a reality and their dedication to helping other refugees in the future.

Laurie Davies and her husband, Steve, have been members of Northminster for over 20 years. She is a deacon and works with the middle-school youth program.