Review: You Welcomed Me

Editor Eric Black reviews "You Welcomed Me: Loving Refugees and Immigrants Because God First Loved Us" by Kent Annan.

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You Welcomed Me: Loving Refugees and Immigrants Because God First Loved Us

By Kent Annan (InterVarsity)

“To love our neighbors, we must see our neighbors” (a paraphrase of the Frederick Buechner quote serving as the epigraph for You Welcomed Me).

How often do you read epigraphs, the quotes between the copyright and contents pages? Be sure always to read them, because they frame the book.

“Are we for them or against them?” Annan’s 8-year-old son asked in all earnestness, referring to immigrants and refugees. His question opened the door to imagining all the ways the situation of immigrants and refugees could be our situation.

Annan clearly is for immigrants and refugees. In the current war of words, those who are “for” often are accused of wanting open borders and caring too little about national security. In response to those “against,” Annan makes it equally clear there are legitimate concerns about welcoming immigrants and refugees and takes those concerns point by point.

Despite the challenges and complexities, Annan continues to encourage his readers to do the hard work of welcoming immigrants and refugees according to a set of commitments he describes in Chapter 6.

The book is sprinkled with powerful stories and important statistics that help to put the immigration and refugee debate into perspective, replacing fear with facts.

The last chapter is a must read, calling us to an exciting future and a rich life.

You Welcomed Me includes at the end of each chapter exercises for both spiritual formation and practicing welcome, making this book a great group study.

Eric Black, executive director, publisher and editor
Baptist Standard

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