Sanctuary/Asylum Newsletter – October 2023

Sanctuary Coalition of Southern New Hampshire

Now that Chris has decided to stay with his brother in Kentucky, we have begun the work of cleaning the Guest Room. We are rearranging the room to make it more of a living space rather than just a bedroom. Over time, it had become overcrowded with donated furniture, clothing, shoes, and blankets.  We have spent this month sorting and laundering. We have removed non-essential furniture. We have cleaned shelves and drawers, as well as the sofa bed and chair. My thanks in capital letters to the following who have helped with these many tasks:  Suzanne Chretien, Jackie Spenard, Happy Beale, Lois Cote, and Jefferson Chickering. Our church sexton has scrubbed down the shower stall. He will be doing a thorough vacuuming of the guest room during his next cleaning rotation. Photo shows room before we began to began our work:

Last Sunday, October 22nd, I attended the “Celebration of Hope” in Dover, NH. The Seacoast Interfaith Sanctuary Coalition (SISC) started out in 2017, as did we, the Sanctuary Coalition of Southern New Hampshire. During the time we were sponsoring Ben in our church, SISC was sponsoring a family at the Dover Friends Meeting House. They also had pushback from the local authorities about having people residing in a non-residential facility. While we have just finished the last of the required regulations to allow a resident, Dover Meeting House was not so fortunate. They had to shift to a home host model, with volunteers opening their houses to asylum seekers. 

Maggie Fogerty with help from the First Parish Church and SISC volunteers put on a very good program, celebrating relationships, looking at what they have accomplished and looking ahead to where they go next. The Indonesian immigrant group entertained us with a traditional dance by two

young women, and a song by a woman whose words and voice were beautiful.

Until my next newsletter, enjoy our few remaining October days.

Liz Alcauskas, UU Church Manchester. October 28, 2023.