"The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the LORD your God." --Leviticus 19:34 (NIV)
"...I was a stranger and you did not invite me in...Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me." --Matthew 25:43,45 (NIV)
As people of faith, The United Methodist Church has a long history of welcoming and supporting immigrants and refugees. Now more than ever, the church needs to act boldly to welcome the stranger and to change the systems that seeks to exclude and divide. 258,000,000 people are part of the largest migration in human history. This unprecendented number demands compassionate care and courageous advocacy rooted in our Wesleyan identity.
Support UMCOR's Work with Migrants
UMCOR ensures access to humanitarian asssistance (food, water, shelter, clothing and health care) and serves all people without discrimation within four major areas of focus.
This Sunday, June 30, Global Ministries encourages you to take part in A Sunday of Solidarity for Suffering Children in three ways:
- Pray for children. You might choose to dedicate a service to suffering children everywhere, or conduct a prayer vigil in your community for hte children suffering along the boader.
- ACT on Behalf of children. While we cannot take UMCOR hygiene kits to the US government holding centers, we are distributing them at transitional shelters all along the US-Mexico border. In the last three months, UMCOR delivered 46,128 hygiene kits to six church-run transitional shelters. Instructions on how to make and send these kits are availalbe here. See information below on how you can ADVOCATE for just and fair policies and practices.
- Donate to UMCOR's Global Migration Advance Special to support ministry with migrants around the world.
- Learn More about UMCOR's work with Migrants
Because United Methodists care about the "stranger in our midst"; believe in keeping families together; and believe in protecting survivors of violence, we are called to Act!
Advocate with Congressional Leaders to End Child Detention
- To find your representative, go to this link.
- Help young people send letters or drawings to Congress
- Write your own letter to Congress
- You can also call 202-224-3121; ask for your Representative by name; tailor your message by using the following talking points:
- Introduce yourself as a concerned constituent and a United Methodist.
- Urge them to to stop the separation of families and detention of children.
We are a people of prayer, and prayer can be an effective public witness. Organize a prayer vigil for Family Unity and Immigration Reform and reflect on the deep scriptural roots of just immigration reform. Planning Tool Kit
Join the West Ohio Immigration Team. Learn how you can engage more deeply in your own community, build relatioships with immigrant and advocate for just policies. dstickley [at] wocumc.org (subject: Immigration%20Network, body: I%20would%20like%20to%20join%20the%20West%20Ohio%20Immigration%20Network.%0AName%3A%0AEmail%3A%0ACity%2C%20State%20and%20Zip%20Code%3A%0ALocal%20Congregation%3A) (Email Dee Stickley-Miner), the Director of Connectional Ministries for the West Ohio Conference.
What does the United Methodist Church Say about Immigration?
- 2016 Book of Discipline, ¶ 162.H -- "We oppose immigration policies that separate family members from each other or that include detention of families with children, and we call on local churches to be in ministry with immigrant families."
- 2016 Book of Resolutions #3281 -- Welcoming the Migrant to the US--We advocate for the "elimination of indefinite detention [and the] incarceration of children."
- 2016 Book of Resolutions #6028 -- Global Migration and the Quest for Justice
- 2016 Book of Resolutions #3164 -- Dream Act
- Bible study based on the Psalms and stories highlighting the plight and of immigrants and refugees.
- Hear the stories of 8 young Hondurans who are a part of exodus of migrants from the country.
- Welcoming the Stranger: Justice, Compassion & Truth in the Immigration Debate by Matthew Soerens & Jenny Hwang Yang
- Christians at the Border: Immigration, the Church and the Bible by M. Daniel Carroll R.
- Seeking Refuge: On the Shores of the Global Refugee Crisis by Stephen Bauman, Matthew Soerens & Dr. Issam Smeir
- The Rev. Dr. David Watson -- "The Real Message of Romans 13"
- The Rev. Dr. Susan Henry-Crowe -- "A Shocking Violation of the Spirit of the Gospel"
- West Ohio local pastor Scott Hicks shares thoughts about why it is important for the Church to not only care about the immigrant, but why we are called into action of justice and mercy on their behalf.
- Study what the Bible says about Immigration
- Pray for all impacted and our leaders and hold a public prayer vigil
- Contact Congress to End Child Detention
- Join the West Ohio Immigration Network by emailing dstickley [at] wocumc.org (subject: West%20Ohio%20Immigration, body: I%20would%20like%20to%20join%20the%20West%20Ohio%20Immigration%20Network.%0AName%3A%0AEmail%20Address%3A%0AMailing%20Address%3A%0ALocal%20Church%3A%0ADistrict%3A) (Dee Stickley-Miner), Director of Connectional Ministries