Monthly Archive for: "September, 2017"
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The God whisperers: The most powerful Trump advisers you’ve probably never heard of

21 September 2017

By Jack Jenkins

After President Donald Trump rescinded an Obama-era executive order that offers work permits to undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children, many religious communities responded with resounding disapproval. In addition to faith-based groups that physically protested the move, a staggering number of faith groups from across the theological spectrum issued statements condemning the decision, arguing it did not reflect a religious call to compassion and describing it as “immoral,” “reprehensible,” or “cruel.”

Read more from Think Progress >>

Baptists lend hand to ‘Dreamers’

18 September 2017

By Seth Brown

Hispanic Christian communities in North Carolina are pulling together in support of young undocumented immigrants as they deal with uncertainty caused by the Trump administration’s announcement Sept. 5 that it would phase out the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
Luis Tejera, campus pastor for Hickory Grove Baptist Church in Charlotte, met the following week with more than two-dozen students and young adults that were shielded from immediate deportation by the Obama-era policy.

Read more from The Biblical Recorder >>

Hope for Dreamers Who Are ‘Victims of a Broken System’

16 September 2017

By Donna Russell

Republicans and Democrats aren’t the only ones divided over what to do about the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program for undocumented immigrants known as Dreamers. 

Evangelical ministers and leaders are also divided, some saying we must protect our borders and citizens while others say Dreamers, who were brought to the United States as children, some even as infants, and grew up in the U.S. are victims of a broken system. 

Read more from CBN News >>

Casa Blanca: Trump apoya a “Dreamers” pero no habrá “amnistía”, y demócratas exigen el “Dream Act”

15 September 2017


WASHINGTON.- En medio de tensas negociaciones migratorias, la Casa Blanca aseguró este jueves que el presidente Donald Trump apoya una legislación que proteja a los “Dreamers” e incremente la vigilancia fronteriza, pero insistió en que no se trata de una “amnistía”, mientras los demócratas y activistas pro-inmigrantes exigieron  la aprobación del “Dream Act”  para los jóvenes indocumentados.

Read more from La Opinion >>

Evangelical Letters of Support for Dreamers Draw 3,450 Signatories

Signers Hail from All 50 States and Washington, D.C.

September 14, 2017

WASHINGTON, D.C.— Thousands throughout the country agree: We need workable solutions for Dreamers in our churches and communities.

More than 3,450 pastors and evangelical leaders representing every state now have signed on to letters urging the Trump administration and members of Congress to protect Dreamers.

Leaders of the Evangelical Immigration Table initially signed the letters to the president, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin) and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) to push for a legislative solution to protect Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients.

“We hope that you will work to find solutions that allow these young people to stay in our country long-term and continue to be a blessing to our communities,” they wrote. “Now is the time for bold leadership and action.”

The following are new quotes from notable signatories. Additional quotes are available here and here.

Felix Cabrera, Lead Pastor, Iglesia Bautista Central, Oklahoma City:
“Miles de nuestras iglesias en la Convención Bautista del Sur están llenas de maravillosos jóvenes que el único país que conocen es Estados Unidos de América. Sus padres los trajeron aquí cuando eran niños. Ellos no escogieron ni decidieron venir aquí, nadie les preguntó. Sin embargo, en este país se asimilaron, aprendieron el idioma, fueron a la escuela, están en la universidad y muchos se graduaron de ella y son profesionales. La inmensa mayoría están trabajando y aportando a nuestra economía y un grupo considerable pone en riesgo su vida todos los días en el ejército de los Estados Unidos, gracias al DACA.

“Ruego al Señor que los congresistas hagan lo correcto y de una vez y por todas presenten legislación para que a estos jóvenes americanos su sueño se les haga realidad.”

Joseph Castleberry, Ed.D., President, Northwest University, Kirkland, Washington:
“In its greatest moments, America has never prized a narrow, legalistic reading of laws over achieving justice. In the case of Dreamers, a bipartisan majority clearly believes justice calls for the triumph of mercy over judgment. By passing a law that provides permanent protection for Dreamers, we will take a step toward making a bitterly divided America great again.”

Micah Fries, Pastor, Brainerd Baptist Church, Chattanooga, Tennessee:
“I am glad to stand in support of Dreamers. As believers in Christ, Scripture calls us to advocate on behalf of the vulnerable and marginalized. Few are more marginalized than children who did not decide to live here, but now call this their home, and yet are powerless with respect to their citizenship and fearful of being deported to a place they have likely never known as home. We certainly need a better immigration policy in the U.S., but it must begin with a commitment to protect the children who are most vulnerable and who are already among us. The work of protecting the Dreamers necessarily falls to Congress. It is vitally important that Congress works to provide a permanent solution and that they do so in a timely manner.”

D.A. Horton, Pastor, Reach Fellowship, Long Beach, California:
“Congress passing bipartisan legislation for Dreamers to have a direct pathway for citizenship will provide them with holistic comfort in knowing the only nation they’ve ever known and embraced now knows and embraces them as family and will let the on-looking world know that in America, Dreamers are home.”

Dr. Joel C. Hunter, Pastor, Northland Church, and Chairman, Central Florida Commission on Homelessness, Casselberry, Florida:
“The president’s decision on DACA has put the issue exactly where it needs to be: with Congress. We do not need executive orders to deal temporarily with these Dreamers who are a part of our national productivity and potential; we need a permanent legal solution. Congress, please act now to keep these young people in the only country they have known.”

Kim Whetstone, Discipleship Pastor, Parkview Community Church, Glen Ellyn, Illinois:
“Congress must take action immediately to develop compassionate and comprehensive immigration legislation that reflects the nation’s firm belief in the equality of each human being and each individual’s inalienable right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness and protects Dreamers now. If Congress does not act immediately, we risk losing not only a generation of Dreamers, we risk losing the American dream itself.”

Why Evangelicals Want Immigration Reform

11 September 2017

By Virginia Postrel

When Donald Trump reversed the Obama-era executive order giving legal status to undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. as children, he got pushback from religious leaders. Their response illustrates the ways, expected and unexpected, in which immigrants are changing American Christianity.

Read more from Bloomberg >>

Faith organizations condemn Trump’s decision to end DACA

9 September 2017

By Earle Cornelius

The Trump administration’s decision this week to cancel Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals has been universally condemned by religious organizations in this country.

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops called the ruling “reprehensible.” The United Methodist Church termed the decision “not only unconscionable, but contrary to moral work and witness.” The Jewish Council for Public Affairs, the umbrella body for public policy, called on Congress to act to protect the “Dreamers.”

Read more from Lancaster Online >>

White House rescinds Dreamers program, gives Congress time

6 September 2017

By Tom Strode

The Trump administration announced Sept. 5 the repeal of a program that has protected people brought illegally to the United States as children by their parents, but it also provided a window of time for Congress to act in response.

In a morning briefing, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the revocation of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals(DACA), a 2012 order by President Obama that gave relief from deportation to undocumented immigrants who arrived in this country before their 16th birthday. Obama issued the executive order after Congress failed for more than a decade to pass proposals to address the issue.

Read more from the Biblical Recorder >>

Evangelical Leaders Respond to DACA Rescission, Urge Congress to Act

Update: As of Sept. 7, this letter has been signed by more than 3,000 pastors and evangelical leaders from all 50 states and Washington, D.C.

September 5, 2017

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Evangelical leaders are urging Congress to protect Dreamers following today’s announcement that the Trump administration is rescinding Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).

These leaders and others had sent letters last week to the president, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin) and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky), to insist that President Trump work with Congress to pass bipartisan legislation to protect Dreamers. Since then, more than 1,000 pastors and evangelical leaders from 46 states have signed on to the letters.

The following are quotes today from Evangelical Immigration Table leaders:

Leith Anderson, President, National Association of Evangelicals:
“Congresses have convened and adjourned from one election cycle to the next while Dreamers have waited. May this Congress step up to legislate for Dreamers and turn waiting into promise and hope.”

Scott Arbeiter, President, World Relief:
“We have a clear and compelling moral obligation to the hundreds of thousands of Dreamers who are here among us. We cannot fail these children and young people nor our national interest yet again. Congress must act. I believe there is bipartisan support for legislation that will put our compassion, wisdom and moral courage into law.”

Shirley V. Hoogstra, President, Council for Christian Colleges and Universities:
“Congress must act. The stakes are high. Extraordinary pressure on Congress and unimaginable consequences for DACA students and families are two motivators that must bring this long-needed and overdue legislation. The American people can hardly stand the current levels of inaction and partisanship. Congress can restore our belief that people matter and that unnecessary penalty to innocent people is not tolerated. While cynicism lurks, every day presents new opportunities to make the laws we need. The CCCU intends to encourage and hold congressional friends and leaders accountable by working side by side with the Evangelical Immigration Table and our other partners in this work.”

Hyepin Im, CEO, Korean Christian Community Development/Faith and Community Empowerment:
“With today’s announcement of rescission of DACA, the lives of more than 800,000 Dreamers are hanging in the balance. They are our youth in whom America has made great investments. Since DACA, many have demonstrated and contributed to the strength of America. We ask Congress to act expeditiously to ensure that these youths continue to contribute to making America the best that it aspires to be.”

Jo Anne Lyon, Ambassador, The Wesleyan Church:
“I am asking Congress to please remember the DACA recipients who are in their own districts. This group of young people is making their districts stronger, but even more our nation stronger through their brilliance, integrity, hard work and loyalty to the United States. They are our leaders in building a strong society now and in the future for the common good of all.”

Dr. Russell Moore, President, Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention:
“Congress should do the right thing and provide a solution for those who were brought here by parents as children. Meanwhile, churches will be here to speak hope to children now thrown into fear and insecurity about their families and their futures.”

Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, President, National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference:
“I am disappointed that these protections are ending, and I’ve expressed that disappointment to the White House directly. … Thankfully, it is the job of Congress to make laws, and now the president has provided Congress a six-month window to legislate a more permanent and legally defensible solution for Dreamers. Six months is too long; we will demand action from Congress within 60 days. We do not intend on letting a single member of Congress have a good night’s rest until they guarantee our young people can rest easy. We will not be silent until every Dreamer can dream again.”

Rev. Tony Suarez, Executive Vice President, National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference:
“The president has put the onus on Congress, and it’s Congress’ responsibility to the American people and Dreamers to finally pass a permanent solution. While I think it would be best to keep DACA in place for the time being, I also understand the frustration of the American people and the White House with Congress’ inability to pass a permanent solution. I implore our elected representatives to solve this issue once and for all.”

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