Throughout the Bible, God's people are instructed to welcome, care for, and love the 'stranger' or 'foreigner' in their midst. In the United Methodist Church, this mandate is further explained in the Social Principles: "We recognize, embrace, and affirm all persons, regardless of country of origin, as members of the family of God. We affirm the right of all persons to equal opportunities for employment, access to housing, health care, education, and freedom from social discrimination. We urge the Church and society to recognize the gifts, contributions, and struggles of those who are immigrants and to advocate for justice for all."
As Christians and United Methodists, are we living out this call? Are we following God's commands? Are we treating the least among us as we would treat Christ himself? "For 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." (Matthew 25:35)
Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by doing that some have entertained angels without knowing it. (Hebrews 13:2)
You shall also love the stranger, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt. (Deuteronomy 10:19)