120 United Methodist Bishops, Agencies, Organizations Endorse Statement on 'Border Security, Economic Opportunity & Immigration Modernization Act'
By Wayne Rhodes, Director of Communications, General Board of Church & Society
120 United Methodist bishops, general agencies and other denomination entities have issued a statement to U.S. senators commending the "Gang of 8" attempt at immigration reform. The statement salutes "this first step towards just and humane reform" and urges the senators to improve the "Border Security, Economic Opportunity & Immigration Modernization Act (S....
President Invites Bishop to Immigration Meeting
A UMNS Report
By Kathy Gilbert*
United Methodist Bishop Minerva Carcaño was among a small group of faith leaders invited by President Barack Obama to a private meeting at the White House March 8 to discuss immigration reform.
"Immigration reform is a moral issue we all share in common," she said of the 14 religious leaders at the meeting.
"During the meeting, the president emphasized that comprehensive immigration reform was a high priority for him, and...
UMs Hold More Than 250 Family Unity Prayer Vigils So Far
32 states, District of Columbia hold events seeking comprehensive immigration reform.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — United Methodists in 32 states and the District of Columbia have conducted more than 250 prayer vigils this year to bring attention to the brokenness of the U.S. immigration system. The vigils have been gatherings to share stories, acknowledge the system's brokenness and pray for legislative change. Primary focus of the vigils is to keep immigrant families together.
Carcano Guest at Obama Immigration Speech
A UMNS Report
By Kathy L. Gilbert and Amanda Bachus*
When President Barack Obama outlined his plan for immigration reform at a high school in Las Vegas Jan. 29, he made sure The United Methodist Church was represented in recognition of the "hard work" the denomination is doing for undocumented immigrants.
Bishop Minerva Carcaño, episcopal leader for the California-Pacific Annual (regional) Conference and chair of the United Methodist Interagency Taskforce...
Obama Leadership on Immigration Reform Welcomed by United Methodist Social-Justice Agency, Bishop
WASHINGTON, D.C., January 29, 2013— The General Board of Church & Society (GBCS) applauds the announcement today by President Obama in Las Vegas, Nev., calling for necessary reforms in order to fix the United States' broken immigration system.
President Obama called for a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, including undocumented youths or "DREAMers," and to strengthen the family immigration system by reducing the large backlog of visas. Both of these...
Model Helps Churches Welcome Immigrants
Congregations across U.S. embarking on 5-step journey
By the Rev. Noel Andersen*
Congregations across the United States are embarking on the journey of becoming "Immigrant Welcoming Congregations" (IWC). Participation in this journey equips churches to travel from mercy to justice, from service to incarnational friendship, from activism to organizing, from "ministering to" immigrants to being transformed alongside of immigrant communities.
The Time for Just and Humane Immigration Reform is Now
By Bill Mefford
Director of Civil and Human Rights
General Board of Church and Society
As followers of Jesus Christ, we cannot miss the greatest opportunity we have had in decades to impact the national debate in creating a more just humane immigration system. After the U.S. election, Senator John McCain stated emphatically that he agreed with the calls for comprehensive immigration reform. Though we may disagree about various issues, the time for just and humane immigration reform is...
UM Facebook Page on Immigration Issues Is Established
The Rev. Jim Perdue, a General Board of Global Ministries (GBGM) missionary assigned to immigration justice ministry, has set up a Facebook page to assist United Methodists in understanding the issues and to help them get involved.
"Churches have been wondering how to get involved in helping those students within their parishes who were brought here illegally as children and are now in high school and college, but who won't be able to get work in this country in which they grew up,"...
Member of Korean UMC of Santa Clara Valley, Charged with Immigration Violation, Is Released
A young adult member of Korean United Methodist Church of Santa Clara Valley, site of this Saturday's "Be-See-Do What Matters to God" Discovery Event, was released yesterday (Tuesday, March 27) after being detained for several weeks in Arizona on an immigration charge.
A UMNS Report
By Linda Bloom*
Ueen Joung (Cindy) Chang, 26, a long-time member of Korean United Methodist Church of Santa Clara Valley, was on her way to attend a friend's wedding in Phoenix on March 8 when...
Social Justice Agency Sets 2012 Legislative Priorities
On the list are overcoming human trafficking, eradicating poverty and malaria, and protecting health for all.
WASHINGTON, D.C.—The United Methodist General Board of Church & Society (GBCS) has set its 2012 legislative priorities for the 112th U.S. Congress. The priorities include several holdovers from 2011, including advocacy for immigration reform, a clean energy future, and fully funding international family planning.
The priorities support social justice stances...
GCORR Suggests Giving up 'the I-Word' During Lent
By Rachel Birkhahn-Rommelfanger
Advocacy Intern, General Commission on Religion and Race
Paul tells us in Galatians 3 that, "there is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus." Paul is encouraging the Galatians to stop constructing false divisions, and barriers between each other.
As we conclude the third week of our Lenten journey as a community of faith, we are called to examine those things in...
GBCS Applauds Change in Immigration Policy
Change would improve possibility for undocumented immigrants to keep their families together.
WASHINGTON, D.C.—The United Methodist General Board of Church & Society (GBCS) sent a statement to the White House this week applauding the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) decision to enable some undocumented immigrant children and spouses to reunite with their U.S.-citizen family members.
DHS's proposed change would enable undocumented immigrants with a U.S.-citizen spouse or...
UMs Participate in Global Event on Migration, Development, and Human Rights
NEW YORK, NY—A delegation of 18 Methodists, hosted by the United Methodist General Board of Global Ministries (GBGM), is attending the People's Global Action on Migration, Development, and Human Rights (PGA) in Geneva, Switzerland, as part of the mission agency's focus on global migration and poverty. The global event began Nov. 28 and ends Dec. 2, 2011.
The PGA is a grassroots event organized by Migrant Rights International that brings together migrant organizations from around the...
UM Communications Recognized for Creative Excellence
Malaria Documentary Wins Highest Awards in International Competition
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Three MarCom awards have been awarded to United Methodist Communications by the Association of Marketing and Communications Professionals for documentaries produced by the agency: A Killer in the Dark: An Extraordinary Effort to Combat Malaria and Dreamer.
"To be recognized for the quality of our work is rewarding," said the Rev. Larry Hollon, chief executive of United...
UMs Hold Half of DREAM Sabbaths Across Country
More than 500 events raise awareness of unjust situation thwarting ambitions of young, undocumented immigrants brought to this country by their parents.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — United Methodists accounted for almost half of the observances of DREAM Sabbath across the United States this fall. The Interfaith Immigration Coalition reported more than 500 events to raise awareness of the unjust situation thwarting the ambitions of young, undocumented immigrants brought to this country by their...
Webinar on Immigration Planned for Oct. 4
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — Immigration is a front-burner topic in today's political world, yet people of faith who work with immigrants often avoid talking about immigration issues. To help Christians foster fruitful conversations on immigration, Rethink Church will conduct a webinar at 8 a.m. (PDT) on Tuesday, Oct. 4. To participate, sign in as a guest.
Rethink Church, part of United Methodist Communications, also offers a free resource guide to help organize and facilitate discussions....
'Rethink Immigration' Resources Now Available
Nashville, Tenn. (UMNS) — Rethink Church is ready to help you rethink immigration, by offering a free package of materials to use in many different ways.
The package features a 12-minute video about Jasmine, a Michigan teen who found solace in The United Methodist Church when the complications of immigration left her alone. It also includes bulletin graphics, promotional poster designs, and newspaper ads to help you advertise to your community, along with supplementary resources...
DREAM Sabbath Sunday Toolkit Available
Churches are encouraged to participate in interfaith observance between Sept. 16 and Oct. 9.
By Wayne Rhodes, Editor, Faith in Action
The United Methodist Council of Bishops' Committee on Immigration, the United Methodist Interagency Immigration Task Force, and the General Board of Church and Society are encouraging congregations to observe a DREAM Sabbath.
The interfaith observance will enlist churches, synagogues, and mosques across the country to dedicate time to a...
'Pass DREAM Act,' Urge UM Bishops, GBCS Chief Executive
Letter sent in support of citizenship process for undocumented students
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Three United Methodist leaders sent a letter July 18 to the U.S. Senate subcommittee on Immigration, Refugees & Border Security urging them to pass the DREAM Act.
The bipartisan legislation, recently reintroduced by Sen. Richard Durbin, D-Ill., in the Senate and Reps. Howard Berman, D-Calif., and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fla., in the House, would provide a process for undocumented...
Immigration Task Force Seeks Stories
By Alice Ann Glenn
In the California-Nevada Annual Conference our borders are airports, sea ports, bus depots, and train stations – not international borders. That has not left us immune to serious immigration issues with which we as United Methodists need to deal on a regular basis, however. In this Conference we have had a major portion of an ethnic congregation removed, individuals deported, and others left struggling to get papers or needing to leave the country for a period of time...