Our story


ARIM empowers displaced people in North America to grow Adventist communities in their heart language.


We exist to:

  • Help Christians encounter refugees and their needs

  • Support refugee leaders who are sharing Jesus with their language groups

  • Provide Adventist materials in refugee languages

  • Provide ideas and mentoring to churches and conferences reaching out to refugees

We are still building the necessary structure to fully actualize all of these goals. Expect new content as we make progress!

Terri Saelee discovered refugees while attending Union College, and the next summer she went as a student missionary to refugee camps in Thailand. After coming back to the states, Terri connected with refugees who spoke the languages she had been learning in Thailand and led a team of volunteers in reaching out to Lao, Hmong and Mienh refugees in Sacramento. They started an indigenous Lao congregation. In 1995, Terri married Ko Saelee, a church planter from Thailand. Together they planted a Hmong congregation in Sacramento and are now reaching out to Hmong refugees in Wisconsin.

In 2009, Terri founded ARIM. While her work had impacted a few ethnic groups, there were many more that she couldn’t reach alone. ARIM now empowers refugee leaders to evangelize their own people groups (as well as other people groups with similar cultures), taking the work of making forgotten people part of our Adventist family into a much broader sphere.

Terri coordinates ARIM through the office of Tony Anobile, Vice President of the North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists for Multi-Lingual, Multi-Ethnic Ministries.