Refugee Response from TBA Leadership
I was hungry and you gave me food,
I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink,
I was a stranger and you welcomed me...
The recent executive order of President Trump's administration regarding refugee and immigrant travel, which includes the banning of refugees from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen, demands a response from the Church. Many of our partners and denominational leaders have already made statements, some of which you may read here:
Church World Service, Religious Leaders, and Refugees Denounce President Trump's Announcement on Refugee Resettlement (includes a statement by Rev. Dr. Sharon Watkins, our General Minister and President)
2,000 interfaith leaders oppose changes in refugee resettlement
Part of the letter from the Interfaith Immigration Coalition reads:
Together, representing our various faiths, we decry derogatory language that has been used about Middle Eastern refugees and our Muslim friends and neighbors. . . As people of faith, our values call us to welcome the stranger, love our neighbor, and stand with the vulnerable, regardless of their religion. We pray that in your discernment, compassion for the plight of refugees will touch your hearts. We urge you to be bold in choosing moral, just policies that provide refuge for vulnerable individuals seeking protection.
Here are a few things we in the Trinity-Brazos Area can do:
- Attend the DoC Refugee & Immigration Ministries "Refugees Welcome" webinar TODAY(January 30), 3 p.m. Central.
- Register for the webinar here. The call in number (often best for audio) is: 641-715-3670, code 104402#. The link for the visual portion of the webinar will be: http://join.me/faith4immigration
- The RIM site linked above includes information about calling your elected officialsto communicate your welcome for refugees, complete with a sample call script.
- Clergy can sign on to the above-mentioned Immigration Coalition Letter here.
- Giveto or volunteer with Refugee Services of Texas.
- Plan or attend a prayer vigilfor refugees. There are already several planned around the state, and there may be one in Fort Worth on the evening of Wednesday, February 1. Stay tuned for more details.
- Get involved with your local interfaith group.We'll have more information in upcoming TBA newsletters about some options, and Google is a ready resource, too.
As we struggle together toward a more welcoming and just world, may we listen well; speak with courage; see Christ in each person; and love as God first loved us.
Rev. Christy Drechsel, Trinity-Brazos Area Minister of Nurture
Rev. Alicia Harker, Trinity-Brazos Area Minister of Connection
Nathaniel Cook, TBA Ministry Assistant
Rev. Dr. Kyle Dennis, TBA Moderator
Rev. Kristin Burrow, TBA Leadership Chair
Rev. David Hargrave, TBA Secretary
TBA Global Concerns Committee: Rev. Allison Lanza, Rev. Megan Peglar, Rev. Jeremy Skaggs, Rev. Jessica Vacketta