Faith, Hope and Charity: A Sponsor Group’s Journey to Resettling Refugees

Madison O'Day | December 18, 2023

After months of hard work, research, and thoughtful preparation, a Private Sponsor Group (PSG) from Millersburg, Ohio eagerly awaits the arrival of new refugee neighbors. “This has been a huge learning experience for us, and we are so excited for the next step,” said the group’s liaison to Church World Service, Annette Lendacki.

In January of 2023, the Department of State announced the launch of a private sponsorship program for global refugees. The initiative, known as Welcome Corps, provides the opportunity for volunteers, neighbors, and coworkers to form a PSG. The groups are responsible for all aspects of the resettlement process, including access to housing, fundraising, employment, medical assistance and school enrollment benefits.

The enthusiasm, resilience and generosity of volunteers gives the Department of State the power to increase America’s resettlement capacity, as well as to chip away at years-long wait times experienced by refugees awaiting permanent resettlement in Refugee Processing Centers—particularly those in Africa and Latin America. 

The Millersburg PSG credits their faith for their passion and dedication to sponsoring a migrant family which has already sparked the impetus to provide homes for newcomers. Recently, I had the pleasure of joining the group’s core members on an organizing call and was impressed and encouraged by their open dedication to a diverse, connected and fully supported community.

When I asked the group why they felt compelled to open their homes to newcomers, one member said: “Faith, Hope, Love; Faith, Hope, Charity. These are the values that we live by. They are not passive ideals. By opening our hearts, our lives and our communities to those less fortunate in this world we are following in the footsteps of Christ’s path on earth, and in the direction He has shown us.”

“When newcomers become part of our community, we will wholeheartedly provide support so they can be willing neighbors, volunteers, business leaders, and community members,” Lendacki added. “We are focused on providing a seamless and supported resettlement experience, and we feel that our faith commands us to extend a hand to society’s most vulnerable members.”

Having witnessed such dedication, preparation, and enthusiasm from the Millersburg Mennonite Sponsor Group, I have no doubt that their newcomers will be received with love and showered with support. 

Madison O’Day is the Press Assistant for Church World Service. For more information on private sponsorship through the Welcome Corps program, please visit