By Sister Regina Siegfried, ASC
Two small and little-known organizations in St. Louis have given me pause to reflect on how good grows from goodness.
The Immigrant and Refugee Women’s Program, housed in an Episcopal church’s parish hall basement, provides English teachers for immigrant and refugee women as they learn to navigate American culture and the English language.
The women who staff the program are competent, compassionate, caring, and concerned about their students and teachers. Each teacher is matched with a student and provided with the trademark teacher’s bag full of notebooks, index cards, pencils, pens, text books, folders, and anything else that will make the individualized tutoring session beneficial for student and teacher.
The atmosphere of the office is always calm, quiet, and welcoming; I love to drop in to collect more supplies or to bring my Iraqi student for a visit so that she meets the women who have her welfare in their hearts.
Oasis International St. Louis, located in the shadow of the slowly turning paddles of the landmark Bevo Mill restaurant, bustles with activity as refugees wait for assistance.
Spacious, tastefully decorated and welcoming, the center is a place for refugees to receive clothing, participate in classes in English, and obtain other assistance to make their transition to a new country and culture less traumatic. Like the Immigrant and Refugee Women’s Program, Oasis International St. Louis is a place of calm, joy, and welcome.
Good happens through IWRP and Oasis International St. Louis; goodness and grace walk around in their staff, teachers, and volunteers.
I leave their spaces knowing I’ve just been in a place where God’s work happens.
Find some places in your area where good happens because of the goodness and grace in people who find purpose in their ministry.