NEW

We Wish You a Merry Saturnalia: Northern Churchman

We Wish You a Merry Saturnalia? The Northern Churchman There is a familiar feel to this time of year. The Christmas advertising on television, the darker evenings, the Carol Services – and the inevitable scoffers who call the Christmas story a myth. Not ‘Once in Royal...

Mark Pickles: The Story of Two Trampolines

Gospel-Driven Anglicanism By the Revd Dr Mark Pickles The Story of the Two Trampolines:  A passage that is frequently referred to during times of great revival is Isaiah 64:1-3:  “Oh that you would rend the heavens and come down, that the mountains might quake at your...

Ten Thousand Bibles for London’s Children

TBS Auxiliary Meets Ten Thousand Bibles For London’s Children The Greater London Auxiliary of the Trinitarian Bible Society was delighted to report at its Annual Meeting held on 15 November that over 10,000 Bibles have been distributed to London schools since the...

Good News for Egypt’s Christians

Barnabas Fund Reports Good News for Egypt’s Christians The government of Egypt licensed 125 churches and church-affiliated buildings on 14 November. It is the 24th batch of approvals made since the government committee overseeing the licensing process started work in...

Church Society’s Response to MP Ben Bradshaw

Church Society’s Response to MP Ben Bradshaw In the aftermath of Desmond Tutu’s daughter being refused permission to preside at a funeral in a Church of England parish, Labour MP Ben Bradshaw told The Guardian that the “C of E must move swiftly to welcome lesbian...

Collins: Who’s Your Righteousness?

Who’s Your Righteousness? By the Revd Canon Chuck Collins Who’s your righteousness? "The Lord our Righteousness" was the sermon preached March 20, 1757 at St. Mary's Church in Oxford. It offended nearly everyone that day and William Romaine was invited to never preach...

Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction Act of 1963

Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction Act of 1963 Persons Against Whom Proceedings May be Instituted. Proceedings under this Measure may be instituted against an archbishop, any diocesan bishop or any suffragan bishop commissioned by a diocesan bishop or any other bishop or a...

Editorial: Joy to the World Cup

Editorial Joy to the World Cup The result of the 2022 FIFA World Cup is already in. And it appears the Church of England has lost. The latest advice from the Church of England’s Support Hub is for parishes to consider the timing of Christmas Carol Services to avoid...

Symes to Step Down from Anglican Mainstream Leadership

Symes to Step Down from Anglican Mainstream Leadership By Chris Sugden Andrew Symes is to stand down as Executive Secretary of Anglican Mainstream on January 1, 2023, after nearly ten years in post. Rev Symes, 56, who had earlier served with Crosslinks in South...

Retired Bishop Given Life Suspension

Retired Bishop Given Life Suspension By George Conger The former Bishop of Ramsbury has been suspended for life from the ordained ministry after he admitted to having sexually abused two women. The Daily Mail reported the Rt Rev. Peter Hullah had been the subject of...

UK Government Announces Plans for Afghan Relocation & Assistance

UK Government Announces Plans for Afghan Relocation & Assistance

The UK government has announced its plans for assisting people who were evacuated from Afghanistan.  

According to the official government website:

“There are two separate schemes designed to help with the specific situation in Afghanistan. The ARAP (Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy) scheme is for around an estimated 5000 Afghans who are current or former locally employed staff (e.g. interpreters, embassy guards) who are assessed to be under serious threat to life and their families. The scheme in its current form has run since April.

The Afghanistan Citizens’ Resettlement Scheme is a new scheme that will welcome 5,000 Afghan citizens in year one, with up to a total of 20,000 in the long term. It is aimed at those most in need who have been forced to flee Afghanistan, including women, girls and children at risk given their particular vulnerability.

Every person coming to the UK as part of the resettlement scheme will be subject to the same strict security checks as those resettled through other schemes.

All refugees (i.e. anyone who arrives through either resettlement scheme) have access to mainstream benefits and services, including access to healthcare via the NHS and funding for English for Speakers of Other Languages through the Adult Education Budget (if they are unemployed and looking for work). They also have immediate and unrestricted access to the labour market and are eligible to receive employment support from the Department for Work and Pensions.

Anyone who arrives through the resettlement schemes will have been subject to security checks and have been granted full refugee status. However, it should be noted that many more people from Afghanistan will (and indeed already are) be arriving by irregular means (e.g. by boat). These are classed as asylum seekers and need to apply for refugee status. In the year to March 2021, over 3,000 Afghan nationals had asylum claims pending in the UK, over two-thirds of whom have been waiting longer than six months.

Asylum seekers are eligible for some support though it is much more limited than for refugees. This support includes:

  • A weekly payment of £39.64 is designed to help pay for things like food, clothing and toiletries. The allowance is loaded onto a debit card (ASPEN card) each week
  • Accommodation, but with no choice about where this will be
  • Basic health and dental care, and free prescriptions
  • Children must go to school and may receive free meals.

According to various NGOs in the country, Afghanistan is thought to have several thousand citizens who’ve converted from Islam to Christianity during the last twenty years.  Under the form of Shariah law espoused by the Taliban, such conversions are illegal and merit the death penalty.  Christian converts were not evacuated to western nations.

Churches across the UK are formulating their approaches on how to minister to the evacuees.

Previous

Next