Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Center for American Progress Releases Report on Immigration Reform and Communities of Faith

The Center for American Progress released a report today entitled "Loving Thy Neighbor: Immigration Reform and Communities of Faith." The report documents the activities of faith-based communities and organizations around the nation, as people within these communities reach out to one another and to the immigrants in their midst. Communities of faith are becoming an increasingly important voice in the public discussion on immigration reform.

As the report says, the recent increase in prominence of hate groups has "dehumanize[d] the stranger in our midst." Teachings from diverse faith communities encourage people to instead welcome the strangers in their communities. The report tells the stories of six communities that took action to protect the rights of immigrants and voice their concerns to their members of Congress.

I especially recommend reading the story entitled "Pilgrimage" (starting on page 15). Following the raid in Bellingham, WA, in February 2009, members of the community in which the raid took place gathered together to march peacefully to the detention center where undocumented workers from the raid were being held. This march, which took them across 143 miles and included more than 500 participants, demonstrates well the commitment of faith-based communities to uphold the rights and dignity of all of their neighbors, regardless of legal status.

The report also mentions that more than 100 peace vigils on immigration reform took place in February. The Interfaith Immigration Coalition organized these peace vigils, and will be organizing them again in 2010.

For the full text of the report, click here. To see an interactive map, designed by the Center for American Progress, documenting where around the country faith groups have taken action for immigration reform, click here.

No comments:

Post a Comment