Life Stories

Who’s in Our Backyard?

“How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring the good news!” – Romans 10:15b

It can be overwhelming when we watch the news or scroll through social media and see the difficulties people face in other countries. Many are forced to flee their countries for fear of their lives. Often we’re just unsure of how we can help…but did you know that many of these refugees live right here in our community? 

For over four years, teams of local missionaries from Milestone Missions have been serving in a community in Fort Worth, where over 700 refugee families from over 30 foreign countries have been placed. 

In addition to multiple outreaches each month, every summer our Fort Worth Refugee Mission team spends four days serving refugees that have settled in our area. This trip is uniquely powerful, as our team has been able to form lasting relationships that go well beyond our mission trip. In July our team visited and brought gifts to families in their homes, hosted a cookout, gave free haircuts as well as provided sports ministry for kids. The trip culminated in a Welcome to America festival where over 300 refugees heard the message of the gospel. Throughout our time there, 18 refugees accepted Christ! We’ll be able to disciple these new believers as we spend time with them throughout the year.


Karissa Sasser went on this trip praying that God would use her to serve others: 

“The Fort Worth Refugee mission trip itself was fulfilling in a very special way in terms of serving the nationsjust 30 minutes down the road. But getting to continually serve them, that’s been a true blessing to all of us who are involved in reaching the refugees in our community.

I started serving in the Refugee Ministry during the 2018 Christmas season. Over this time, we’ve all witnessed significant changes in the kids. We have seen these kids live differently—their attitudes and actions show that.

When we ask them why we share the love of Jesus, they say, “because Jesus loves us.”

It’s really incredible to hear the kids say that because they are seeing the love of Jesus, and walking in His love for them. 

A lot of them don’t know anything about life outside of a refugee camp. Many of them were born in camps, and so, watching them read Storybook Bibles, and say to their friends that they’ve changed because Jesus is in their hearts—that makes it real, it shows Jesus’ love is making a difference in their lives.

There is a boy who was pretty rough around the edges in the way that he talked with us and treated other people around February. On our Fort Worth Refugee Mission Trip in July, he was reading the Storybook Bible and his friends came up, asking, “What happened to you, man?” He said, “Jesus is in my heart, and I want to know about Him.” We were watching all of this unfold. This little boy changed over a period of 6 months, and that happened because he was seeing Jesus’ heart for him and was being loved by others.

That’s what we are most passionate about.

I couldn’t have planned the mission trip to go as well as it did; I could not have written the story better than God wrote it. We were exhausted every day, but joyously so.

When we were leaving at the end of the trip, the kids asked us over and over, “When are you coming back?” We are continuing to build relationships with these kids, before, during, and after the mission trip. You get to go back fully believing that Jesus is going to continue working in them—that’s really special, especially when you see the growth they’ve experienced.”

-Karissa Sasser

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  • Lorraine Thomas
    August 9, 2019 at 2:02 pm

    The Mission is Worth it!
    Thank you Milestone for opportunities to live like Jesus; sharing the love of God to all!
    I believe with all my heart a refugee receiving the gift of God’s love, salvation in Jesus Christ, unlocks intercessory prayer for family members back home in their native country to receive this same gift; salvation in Jesus Name. Many will see and put their trust in Him!
    Philippians 2:10-11 “That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven and things in earth, and things under the earth; and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

  • David Taft
    August 9, 2019 at 2:44 pm

    Karrissa, it was an amazing experience serving along side you, reaching people and building lives while praying for many of the familes we had the opportunity to meet. Unforgettable and eternal memories. Thank you for all that you do and continue to do to live out The Great Commision. Looking forward to serving along side you soon and sowing the soil and reaping the harvest for all that God is doing in the community.