American Baptist Home Mission Societies engages mission liaison for Afghan refugees

VALLEY FORGE, PA (3/23/22)—In light of the United States withdrawing from Afghanistan in 2021 and the resulting Afghan refugee crisis, American Baptist Home Mission Societies (ABHMS) has engaged the Rev. Peter J.B. Carman to serve on a consulting basis as mission liaison for Afghan refugees.

Carman will liaise with the Afghan Placement and Assistance Program of Church World Service—a long-time ABHMS partner—and local churches to offer a fresh start for displaced individuals and families who have been arriving in the United States.

Carman has served as a local American Baptist church pastor since 1985. He has a wide variety of experience with refugee sponsorship and welcome. Having grown up in both India and the United States, he is passionately committed to welcoming those displaced by war or other hardship. He brings experience with Muslim-Christian relations and broader interfaith conversation.

“My hope is that every person of faith is asking themselves, ‘What is God calling me to do?’ in response to the plight not only of Afghan refugees but anyone who has been forced to leave their homes and everything they held dear on account of war, famine, economic circumstance, persecution, disaster or climate change” says Carman. “I’m honored to be working with American Baptists in response to this urgent humanitarian crisis. I’m hoping to be in conversation with every congregation already working with new Afghan arrivals as well as those interested in getting started.”

Carman has served in a number of positions with a variety of organizations, including as a member of the board of directors of the Baptist Peace Fellowship of North America, 2012-2018, and vice-chair and then chair of the Commission on Christian-Muslim Relations of Greater Rochester, 1998-2009. He also served with a refugee mission group engaged in the resettlement of more than 200 refugees from Myanmar, 2006-2009. Since 2016, he has continued to serve with Schenectady Clergy Against Hate.

He earned an M.Div., cum laude, from Yale Divinity School, New Haven, Conn., and a B.A. in Religion at Haverford (Pa.) College.

American Baptist individuals and churches who are interested in sponsoring an individual or a family from Afghanistan or are interesting in helping in other ways are urged to contact Carman at [email protected].

American Baptist Home Mission Societies partners with American Baptists to promote Christian faith, cultivate Christ-centered leaders and disciples, and bring healing and transformation to communities across the United States and Puerto Rico.

American Baptist Churches USA is one of the most diverse Christian denominations today, with approximately 5,000 congregations comprised of 1.3 million members, across the United States and Puerto Rico, all engaged in God’s mission around the world.