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Cultivating
Relationships and Understanding
Across Borders
FDC Coordinator Jocabed Gallegos leading worship at 15th Anniversary of the Migrant Resource Center
July 17, 2021
17 de julio 2021
Dear sisters and brothers,

Have you ever prepared for a dinner party for 10 people and 1000 show up?

When we made the budget for the Migrant Resource Center this year, we did not foresee that the US government would begin expelling women and men through the Douglas/Agua Prieta Port of Entry in large numbers for the first time in over 5 years. And yet one cold morning this past winter without advanced warning, not only did the government begin expelling persons who were detained in our area, but they began sending busloads of persons who were detained four hours from here.

We are grateful for the community of faith here in AP and Douglas (and the extended community in many parts) who have chosen to respond in faith and not fear to the phenomena of migration and have created spaces of welcome for persons fleeing poverty or extreme violence whose dreams have been at least temporarily deferred.

Thank you for choosing welcome through your prayers, your financial support, your advocacy of a New Border Vision, and your acts of hospitality in your own community.

Peace,
Jocabed Gallegos and Mark Adams
FDC Coordinators
Migrant Resource Center:
15 Years of Choosing Welcome
by Perla del Angel, President of the MRC Board
The Migrant Resource Center is a place of encounter and solidarity to assist persons in transit. It was formed by Frontera de Cristo, a ministry of the Presbyterian church, and CAME, a ministry of the Holy Family Parish in Agua Prieta.

On June 30, the anniversary celebration began with an ecumenical prayer in which pastor@s of the Presbyterian, Mennonite and Catholic churches participated. We shared gratitude for the service provided for over 100,000 men, women and children, asked forgiveness for the injustices and calamities suffered by those who migrate, and remembered those who have died on this migrant path.

We also made signs with phrases on drawings that people on the move have left us during their time at this center and placed them in public places, as a way that our community can hear their voices.

Join as we continue to choose welcome and commit ourselves to continue working toward a border of encounter, opportunity and hope.

A Pilgrimage of Remembrance
photos and text by Sister Judy Bourg, SSND,
The School Sisters of Notre Dame organize these pilgrimages to remember persons who have died in Cochise COunty while migrating. To date, they have dome 151.
PABLO FLORES RAMIREZ: PRESENTE!
On July 10, Frontera de Cristo's summer binational interns journeyed with us to the 30 foot border wall, where Pablo Flores Ramirez fell to his death on January 15 of this year.

Pablo was 35 years old —- the loved son of grieving parents, perhaps a brother, perhaps a husband, perhaps the father of hurting children.

We prayed that God would give deep consolation to Pablo’s family and would give hearts of compassion and welcome to those who choose hate over love.

May be build longer tables of welcome and fewer walls of exclusion.


PRESENTE!
by Miriam Maldonado and Mark Adams,
PCUSA Mission Co-workers serving with Frontera de Cristo
Juan, who was separated from his cousin in the desert, recently arrived at the MRC after walking for 16 days in the desert, being apprehended by the U.S. Border Patrol, and then being expelled from the United States. Sister Emma and Sister Maribel washed his feet and cared for the blisters that covered them. They also accompanied him in his grief when he received word that his cousin’s body was recovered. He was the sixth guest who had arrived recently in the MRC who had lost loved ones in the desert.

We are grateful to be a part of a ministry that chooses welcome in the face of painful and deadly rejection and thankful for the witness of our partners in Mexico of Gospel hospitality.

Sister Emma, sharing how she is able to serve when the suffering is so heavy, said, “there is a strong presence of God in each of the persons who come into the MRC seeking refuge and in the team of volunteers. We do this service seeing the face of God in our siblings who are migrating, and we continue forward united in prayer and action.”

Mata Ortiz Pottery Presentation
Join us this Monday, July 19
at 6:30pm Arizona/Pacific/Sonora time
(7:30 MT, 8:30 CT, 9:30 ET)
for a demonstration and exhibition
by Suzy Lopez and José Martinez of Mata Ortiz

Join Us at Café Justo y Mas or via Zoom.
We Choose Welcome
After being extorted on our trip through Mexico, rejected in the US and thrown out, we never imagined we would be welcomed with a delicious cup of coffee and people who care for us. It's like receiving a big hug from a mother. -- Juana from Guatemala

Over the past seven months, 11,951 men, women, and children have found a welcoming place, a delicious cup of coffee, a filling meal, water, first aid, clean socks and underwear, and caring people at the Migrant Resource Center. In May and June alone, 5,840 women and men have received hospitality. Since December of 2020, we have seen a substantial increase in persons being returned to Agua Prieta by the Border Patrol. 
 
Since we had not budgeted for this opportunity to welcome so many of our siblings, the MRC increased its volunteer base and hours and our Board of Directors initiated the We Choose Welcome campaign to make sure that our team had the financial resources to receive each person with love and care. Join us in Choosing Welcome.
Love Mercy, Do Justice, Order Coffee
You can continue to order your coffee online here and help your sisters and brothers during the pandemic. You will receive delicious 100% organic coffee cultivated, roasted, and shipped by the Café Justo cooperative and you will also be helping families affected by COVID-19. To order by mail instead of online, just download this form.
Building Peace Across Borders 
Over a Delicious Cup of Coffee
Watch our latest video
We are grateful for our partners from National Community Church
who produced this wonderful video on the topic of peacemaking
featuring Frontera de Cristo and Café Justo.  
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