IN partnership with West Yorkshire Destitute Asylum Network (WYDAN) the Methodist Church in Guiseley has hosted 10 asylum seekers for a week, giving them an evening meal, bed for the night and breakfast. Bus passes have been provided every day for each guest. During the evening there has been music, games and chat. It has been an Ecumenical event with friends from other churches and from the local community providing help with packed lunches, evening meals and laundering. Church members have supported both financially and with prayer.

Church steward Jean Fletcher said: “We have learnt a lot from this experience, particularly how vital this kind of support is for these men as they await an outcome to their asylum application. We also learnt about the guests themselves and their lives now and before they came to this country. They are men with many skills and talents, just as an example, one was a chef and another a barber. They all spoke English well enough to get by and some are taking English lessons. They are very quick learners.”

Deacon Jenny Parnell said: “It has been a joy to see the impact that taking part in this project has had upon the Churches and the local community. The school, local businesses and organisations as well as Churches from every denomination have worked together to ensure that this week has been a success. It was encouraging to see friendships being formed as well as a desire to work together in the future.”

WYDAN says the need for shelter is high and the organisation is very grateful for churches in the West Yorkshire area which offer these weeks of shelter.