Immigration policy contradicts issues of faith

 

Few commands in the Bible are as frequent and consistent as the command to welcome the stranger in our midst. The values of love, welcome, care, and concern for the sojourner and the person in need are echoed throughout a wide variety of faith traditions. As people of faith, therefore, we are dismayed and angered by this administration's cruel treatment of undocumented immigrants and by its threats to increase deportations and tear apart more families.

New immigrants pose no more threat to our country than did previous generations of immigrants. Nearly two-thirds of undocumented immigrant adults in the U.S. have been here for more than 10 years, and more than half have been here for more than 15 years (Pew Research Center, 2017), countering the administration's narrative that there is a new influx of immigrants.

The vast majority of Americans have immigrant ancestors. We are called to treat the immigrants of today with the same kindness we would have wanted for our own immigrant ancestors. We, the members of the POWER ministry at Our Saviour's Lutheran Church, oppose the administration's plans to tear people from their homes; we urge lawmakers to institute compassionate immigration policies; and we pledge our support to the immigrants among us.

We pray that as Americans and as people of faith, we will extend a hand of friendship and welcome to our immigrant neighbors so that they can continue to enrich our society, just as it has been enriched by generations of immigrants before us.

Kathleen Morkert and Betty Birner

Arlington Heights

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