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Immigration

Learn more on the Office of Social Justice website.

I Have a Confession

I have a confession: I talk about my congressperson more than I talk to my congressperson. I talk about politics more than I participate in politics.

I often rant about how disappointed, upset, or annoyed I am for how my representative voted on this or that, how he does not care, listen or have any sense. Is that gossip? Maybe. But, more importantly it is unproductive. What if I instead went to the actual person and let him know how he has disappointed me and then addressed how we can move forward?

Should We Feel Guilty?

My colleague Shannon Jammal-Hollemans recently made a powerful statement, saying Christians tend to focus on the Fall at the Tree of the Knowledge of good and evil, rather than focusing on the Tree of Life. I believe this cuts to the core of the “burden” of injustice, shedding light on the frustrating, paradoxical occurrence of disempowered Jesus followers.

Welcoming the Stranger

Shortly after the birth of my second son, Sam, I went back to work. After months of being home all the time, I was once again immersed in one of the unspoken trials of modern parenthood: daycare drop-off. Crying, whining, begging, clutching, bribing, peeling-toddler-legs-from-mom’s-waist…there must be mommy support groups for this kind of daily trauma.

Seeing Jesus through the Tear Gas Smoke

We haven’t been able to think about anything else recently. The images of unarmed protesters in Ferguson facing down cops in riot gear through a haze of tear gas are on loop in our brains. If you’ve been watching the news at all, you know some version of the story: an unarmed 18-year-old African American named Michael Brown was shot by a police officer while he was walking home. The circumstances of the shooting are disputed. Riots and looting ensued and heavily militarized cops rolled in.

70% of Farm Workers Undocumented

This is why I am frustrated about the U.S. immigration debates. When I work in agriculture it’s noble–farmers feeding the world–but immigrants doing the exact same work are told to “get in line,” and as real farmers know, there is no line.

Unaccompanied Children: The Push of Violence

You’ve most likely read about the unprecedented number of unaccompanied children arriving at the U.S.-Mexican border, more than 50,000 since October of last year, with 40,000 more projected to reach the border by this coming October. That’s more than 245 children showing up at the border each day without their parents.

From Putumayo to Neerlandia

First, let me tell you how we came to be refugees. In Putumayo, Colombia, we were very scared of the national army as well as the rebels.

A Lament for Immigration: Celebration

A year and a half ago, a small faith community in central New Jersey found themselves in the midst of despair, with little hope of relief. The Reformed Church of Highland Park is a modest worshipping community comprised of young families, students, and a burgeoning group of undocumented Indonesian refugees. For years, the church had walked alongside its undocumented brothers and sisters--offering legal assistance, advocating with Congress, and even offering sanctuary when deportation orders were issued. And what did they have to show for their efforts?

Lament for Immigration: Wisdom

It doesn’t matter how much we talk, what kind of words we may use, or even in how many languages I can say something. If my talk does not go together with my walk, the words are just noise.

Lament for Immigration Part 2

Nehemiah could not ignore the dangerous state of the city he loved. The gates had been burned and it all needed rebuilding. Nehemiah knew that a city in such a broken state, facing constant threat, would never be able to thrive. He knew the people would struggle and it broke his heart.

So, Nehemiah spoke to his king and asked for permission to go and rebuild the city.

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