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Newton collaborative prepares to welcome refugee family


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BRAINTREE -- For parishioners of the Sacred Heart and Our Lady Help of Christians Collaborative in Newton, helping solve the refugee crisis isn't something for people in a far off land, but something that will soon be literally at their doorstep.

The collaborative will be welcoming a refugee family of five from Sudan into the country on Aug. 22, and parishioners couldn't be more excited.

"The amount of energy I have seen people put out for this has been outstanding," said Jim Allaire, coordinator of parish's efforts to welcome and assist the family as it transitions to life in the United States.

"It's been a wonderful experience for our collaborative to have this concrete work of mercy that we can commit to," he said.

The collaborative is part of the program POWR, or Parishes/People Organized to Welcome Refugees. It's a program funded by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, and implemented by individual dioceses or charitable organizations throughout the country. While the USCCB gives guidelines and ideas on how the POWR program can be run, ultimately it's up to the local communities to decide precisely how to design and carry out the program.

In the Archdiocese of Boston, the program is carried out by Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Boston.

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