Who is welcoming the stranger? exploring faith-based service provision to refugees in Philadelphia

Nicole Ives, Jill Witmer Sinha, Ram Cnaan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Inherent in the refugee experience is dislocation. One task for refugees and members of the host country is restoring social ties that have been disrupted. Religious congregations are involved in restoring those ties in refugee resettlement in various ways. This study was undertaken to identify the prevalence and types of services congregations provide to refugees in a metropolitan area. Data from 1,392 congregations from the Philadelphia Census of Congregations were analyzed to provide detailed information of congregations involved in refugee resettlement. Characteristics of 129 congregations who provided programming for refugees and in-depth descriptions of 18 congregational programs are presented.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71-89
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Religion and Spirituality in Social Work
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2010
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Received January 12, 2009; accepted June 10, 2009. The researchers would like to thank the Program for Religion and Social Policy Research, School of Social Policy and Practice, University of Pennsylvania, for supporting this study. Address correspondence to Nicole Ives, MSW, PhD, Assistant Professor, McGill University, School of Social Work, 3506 University Street, #309, Montreal, QC H3A 2A7, Canada. E-mail: nicole.ives@mcgill.ca


  • Congregational programs
  • Refugee resettlement
  • Sponsorship

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Religious studies
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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