The impetus of Faith on the Move Bible Studies came from the experience of reading biblical stories with “people on the move”: students at Luther College, a residential school where I serve as one of the campus pastors; Central American and African refugees with whom I worked through the
Lutheran Refugee Committee in Canada; immigrant communities in my neighborhood in rural Iowa and elsewhere in the country that I’ve been able to visit during my year-long sabbatical. Reading the Bible with people who more easily fit the description of “immigrants” has helped me realize how much—in an increasingly mobile world—migration shapes all of our lives. At the same time, these conversations have also highlighted the role of migration in the vast majority of biblical characters.
In fact, at the core of the biblical story are narratives of migration: Abraham and Sarah, who followed God’s promise; Ruth, who defied the stereotypes against immigrants by proving herself to be faithful,
hardworking, and a blessing; Jesus, who followed his ancestors as he sought refuge in Egypt and spent his ministry challenging us to go to “the other side.”