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Refugee Sponsorship: What’s New?

Refugee Sponsorship: What’s New?

A Spring walk along Lake Ontario

Update April 2016- Thank you messages from Mary and Ritta:

My name is Mary. My family (James, Salwa, Andreh) and I were displaced from our country (Syria) because of war. We stayed in Lebanon for three years, among hundreds of Syrian families. The life in Lebanon was difficult but we had some relatives who helped us to overcome every difficulty. We tried to adapt there, but all the conditions were against it. In March 2015, we received a call from our cousin Nineve, and she told us the Canadian government accepts refugees and she asked if we want any help, and without thinking, immediately we accepted that and she carried out the necessary procedures. After many days, she said that she found a church who accepted our request. We were very happy. Finally the Lord responded to our prayers. The name of the church was the Martin Luther Church. Everything was perfect. It took about eight months. December 31st 2015 I got to Canada alone and after 15 days my family and my cousin got here too. After that we got the opportunity to go and meet with you, the wonderful members of the church, who helped us get a beautiful and safe life. We are whole heartedly appreciating everything you have done for us. We love you so much and will never forget this initiative, which gave us hope and the ability to be happy. We ask God to descend peace and happiness to all of you.
Thank you so much, with all the love and appreciation

My name is Ritta and I am 22 years old. I am an Assyrian Syrian girl. I came to Canada on Jan 14, 2016. It is a great experience to come to this beautiful country because here you will feel comfortable and safe. I really want to thank everyone in the Martin Luther Church who helped to bring me to Canada. You have turned my life from tragedy back to life. I saw in you all love, respect, and kindness from the first time we met. You made me optimistic and taught me how to forget the last horrible period of my life. When you invited my uncle’s family (James Rosto  family) and I  to attend the holy liturgy, we were so happy to be a part of that.
All the members of the church who I know and who unfortunately, I don’t know yet, nice to meet you all. I really appreciate your input to make us happy in different ways. My parents and I will never forget your help and support to bring them to Canada and to keep us together. I am so glad to have people like you in my life and I am sure that we will get closer and be one family. Thank you very much and God bless.


Syrian Refugee Update 2016

Finally, early January 2016, the Rosto family of four, and Ritta arrived in Toronto from Syria via Lebanon. Within the first month Mr. Rosto started working full time to support his wife and their two children and they moved into their own apartment. Ritta will continue to stay with the family sponsor.

We are now actively involved in the integration process. Assistance is divided up between the members of our support group, i.e. education, transportation, medical, housing, employment, etc.

Syrian Refugee Update 2016This March we signed new sponsorship forms as a constituent group with the Canadian Lutheran World Relief (CLWR) for Ritta’s parents and are hoping the immigration process will be speedy.

In the meantime, we continue to work with churches, different refugee organisations and the federal government to inspire, get help and improve processes.

We continue our fund raising effort to support the Syrian families before, during and after arrival in Canada. For example we would like to invite the family to our summer camp to experience the real Canadian wilderness. All donations in time and money are greatly appreciated.

Join the Martin Luther Church refugee group today and help change lives.

Contact: Marlena at the church office, 416-251-8293 or

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