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Sat Dec 24, 2016, 01:32 PM

A Joyful Bustle to Get Ready for Guests: Syrian Refugees

Last edited Sat Dec 24, 2016, 02:31 PM - Edit history (1)

LANCASTER, Pa. — A dull gray house on a hillside had to become a home. Another Syrian family of refugees would be arriving soon, and this empty, echoing old place needed to be readied in welcome.

The word had trickled down from the State Department’s refugee resettlement program. A mother, a father, his brother and four children, the youngest just 10. Muslims, traveling from Turkey. Flying into New York in the next few days.

Their imminent arrival explains all the commotion inside this slate-colored house in the small city of Lancaster, in south-central Pennsylvania. The state may have gone to Donald J. Trump, who likened the Syrian resettlement program to a “a great Trojan horse” for terrorists. But he isn’t president yet. . .

Decades of resettlement work have transformed the Lancaster area into a medley of cultures so rich that Amer Alfayadh, 34, a senior case manager, struggles to name them all: “Syrians, Iraqis, Somalis, Congolese, Ukrainians, Belorussians, people from Kazakhstan. Then, of course, Lebanese, Palestinians. Bhutanese, Nepalese, Burmese, Sri Lankans …”'>>>


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