An Appeal to Conscience from Bishop Peggy Johnson
Reject Actions Banning Refugees and Immigrants from Muslim Countries

This week President Trump signed an order to suspend any immigration for at least 90 days to anyone from Syria, Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen.  These are all Muslim-majority nations. In addition, this same order bars all refugees for at least 120 days and Syrian refugees until further notice.

In response, the Rev. Susan Henry Crowe, General Secretary of the General Board of Church and Society, issued the following statement: “As followers of Jesus we reject in the strongest terms efforts to halt refugee resettlement or impose a religious test for those facing forced migration.  United Methodists around the world are loving their neighbors by welcoming refugees into their congregations and communities.”  

This action by our president does not make our country safer. People of ill-intent are able to enter our country by many other means and can also radicalize the people in our country who are not even from these Muslim-majority countries.

Violence against Americans is not a teaching of the Muslim faith. This order from the president will likely increase the incidences of hate crimes being perpetrated against innocent, law-abiding Muslim people in our nation.

I urge you to have conversations in your churches about this situation, mobilize to write letters, speak to your senators and legislators, and most importantly pray. Pray that our country does not close its borders to innocent people who are living in dire and life-threatening conditions in their home country.  Jesus calls us to welcome the stranger.  

Bishop Peggy Johnson
Eastern Pennsylvania Conference of The United Methodist Church
(800) 828-9093 | 
980 Madison Avenue, Norristown, PA 19403
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