3rd Annual Border Ministries Summit

The Third Annual Border Ministries Summit met November Nov. 20-21. Hosted by the Diocese of San Diego and co-sponsored by Episcopal Migration Ministries and the Office of Global Partnerships of the Episcopal Church, the Zoom event brought together immigration advocates and those providing direct service to immigrants on both sides of the border. Despite the COVID-imposed restrictions of a Zoom conference, the presentations by Bishops south of the border, presentations and facilitation by the Global Immersion Project, and the first person accounts of the struggles of migrants made it a memorable, powerful event. Bishop David led a group of EDSJ participants to the event. 

The several bishops who participated in the conference issued a joint statement arising from the conference that captures a sense of the event and provides pointed challenge to the church. Please read it carefully and share it widely.

As bishops of the Anglican Communion in the Americas participating in the Borderlands Summit 2020 we offer the following statement.
As teachers of the faith, we remind the church that the Bible is full of stories of immigrants, exiles, and refugees and consistently God is with them. We invite the church to study the stories of Abraham and Sarah, Joseph, Moses, Ruth and Naomi, the exile, and note the location and direction of God’s presence. We invite the church to study the New Testament from the perspective of immigration. We note that the word of God immigrated into our reality in the person of Jesus of Nazareth. Before he could walk and talk his parents were forced to flee their home to protect his life. The presence of God in Jesus is not about dividing people but removing the barriers between people.
Regardless of our different national political situations and views, we can agree we now face a migration crisis.
As leaders of the church we are committed to participating in God’s restorative work in the world.
As keynote speaker Jon Huckins reminded us, privilege is an ability to walk away from the experience and brokenness of others. We call upon our church not to exercise our privilege to walk away, but to follow Jesus’ teaching to step towards those who cannot walk away. We commit to meet them where they are and accompany them where they are going, in practical and effective ways.
We commit to four key spiritual practices of everyday peacemaking:
· To see - to see the humanity, dignity, and image of God in everyone;
· To immerse - to step out of comfort into reality - to move toward the pain and brokenness with tools to heal and transform, not to win or destroy;
· To contend - to participate with God in making real the kingdom of God by standing up to the practices and systems which threaten others, to contend for others in ways which are costly to us, and to leverage our resources for systemic change.
· To restore - to celebrate the big and small ways God is restoring our broken world.
Specifically we commit our dioceses to the following actions and we invite the wider church to join us.
·  We will listen to the stories of actual immigrants - not to hear about them but to hear from them directly.
·  We will offer not our charity but our solidarity, building relationships with migrants and their families, strengthening our relationships between our dioceses, and building networks of support and resources all up and down the Americas.
·  We will advocate for policies that embrace immigrants as human beings and beloved children of God - helping them work, live and flourish, and for economic relief in the face of storms, political unrest, the drug trade, human trafficking and poverty.
We give thanks for the journey that we are undertaking together, for the new relationships we are forming, and for the work that lies ahead, knowing that Christ walks with us and redeems all suffering.

We place our hope in the risen Christ who leads us into the joy of His kingdom. Issued on the Feast of Christ the King 2020.

·       The Most Rev. Julio Murray Thompson – Primate of Iglesia Anglicana de la Region Central de America and Bishop of Panama
·       The Most Rev. Enrique Trevino Cruz, Presiding Bishop of Mexico and Bishop of Cuernavaca
·       The Rt. Rev. Lloyd Allen – Bishop of Honduras
·       The Rt. Rev. David Alvarado – Bishop of El Salvador
·       The Rt. Rev. Susan Brown Snook – Bishop of San Diego
·       The Rt. Rev. Diane Bruce – Bishop Suffragan of Los Angeles
·       The Rt. Rev. Ricardo Gomez Osnaya – Bishop of Western Mexico
·       The Rt. Rev. Michael Hunn – Bishop of Rio Grande
·       The Rt. Rev. Jennifer Reddall – Bishop of Arizona
·       The Rt. Rev. David Rice – Bishop of San Joaquin
·       The Rt. Rev. Greg Rickel – Bishop of Olympia
·       The Rt. Rev. Silvestre Romero – Bishop of Guatemala
·       The Rt. Rev. John Taylor – Bishop of Los Angeles

Wrapped in Love

Nothing says love like a homemade quilt. Throughout our nation immigrant individuals are missing home, community, and family. The congregations of Episcopal Church of the Saviour and St James Lutheran in Hanford couldn't agree more. So when their new shared pastor showed up with 12 boxes of quilting fabric and news of the need for quilts for our immigrant communities, they took to the sewing machines.  

Pastor Julie Kelly arrived from Southern California and was active in care of the recently arrived folks in her community. Earlier this year, she received an email sharing stories of folks who walked to the U.S. border and were stuck in tent cities, awaiting entrance to the American Dream. Along with a need for food and medical supplies they were askign for trashbags to be distributed in the tent cities of Tijauna, Tecate, and Mexicali. What shocked her was to learn they were not for trash, but to sleep under.  

When she shared this with others, the first response was, "Well why can't our quilters make quilts?" The team at SJRAISE agreed and a shared ministry between EDSJ and Sierra Pacific Synod the ELCA was born. 

Due to the limitations of what individuals can carry, the quilts are smaller than a twin and larger than a crib blanket (45x60); big enough an adult can curl up under them and be warm. Better yet, while still small enough to put in a backpack, they are a size that can be wrapped around a person who is alone, afraid, and unsure of what is next.  

Due to COVID and immigration developments, this love ministry is still securing modes of transport and distribution that will be effective and useful for those in need, but they already have the first request for 100 in Nogales!  If you would like to support this ministry through your time, talents, or treasure, email Pastor Julie pastorjuliekelly@gmail.com
COVID-19 Resources for Immigrants
(in Spanish)

Guía para Inmigrantes de California + Listos California Esta guía proporciona consejos sobre los servicios, incluyendo los beneficios públicos, que están disponibles para los inmigrantes californianos, incluidos algunos que están disponibles independientemente de su estatus migratorio. Visite COVID19.ca.gov para obtener más información. 

Calls to Action, Training and Resources
PBS series: Latino Americans
Some big, early shifts on immigration expected under Biden

Some dramatic moves on immigration are expected in the early days of the Biden administration. Joe Biden will likely use executive orders to reverse some of President Donald Trump’s most controversial actions, rolling back moves that were a central feature of his administration and important to his base. The Biden administration plans to restore protection for people brought to the U.S. illegally as minors and stop using Pentagon funds to build a border wall. 

Rebuilding the US Refugee Program
for the 21st Century

The United States must learn from past experiences—from the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks through the Trump administration—to rebuild a resilient refugee resettlement program.

Rapid Response Networks Expose ICE’s Raids Threatening Public Health In California 

Communities report arrests in multiple locations in California in what appears to be a coordinated operation placing public health at risk.

Biden pledges to raise refugee ceiling to 125,000

President-elect Joe Biden announced he will raise the number of refugees allowed into the United States to 125,000 in his first year in office, a major reversal from President Donald Trump’s steep cuts to the U.S. refugee program.

Homeland Security Releases Report on 2017 Asylees & Refugees


The collection of artwork comes from the Tornillo Children's Detention Camp where close to 3,000 unaccompanied minors from Central and South America were held. Art was a way to express their faith, the love of their family and friends, and pride in their homeland.

To learn more about the artwork, read this article from the New York Times


From the Office of
Government Relations (TEC)



Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services (LIRS) has developed a toolkit for supporting immigrants currently in detention.


Prayers of the People for use in Ordinary Time
SJRAISE Petitions for Prayers of the People:
Advent through Epiphanytide (2020-21)

First Sunday in Advent
O God, reveal to us your Son’s coming in the cry of justice among all those who come to this country seeking work and a better life. 

Second Sunday in Advent
O God, reveal to us your Son’s coming in all those who seek to make straight the often crooked pathways of our nation’s immigration laws and practices.

Third Sunday in Advent
O God, reveal to us your Son’s coming in all those who long for the year of the Lord’s favor and in all those who work for the compassionate and just treatment of immigrants and asylum seekers.

Fourth Sunday in Advent
O God, reveal to us your Son’s coming in all women who live in danger and fear due their immigration status.

First Sunday after Christmas
O God, may we recognize your Son come to us in the many immigrant children placed at risk by indifferent policies and systems.

Second Sunday after Christmas
O God, hear the anguish of all refugee families who have been separated: parents who search for their children in anguish and desperation, children who live in loneliness and fear.

First Sunday after the Epiphany: The Baptism of the Lord
O God, make known your light and glory by in us by a deeper conviction that we are all your children precious and beloved, beyond any borders or divisions.

Second Sunday after the Epiphany
O God, make known your light and glory by our gratitude for all immigrant farm workers who raise our food.

Third Sunday after the Epiphany
O God, make known your light and glory our appreciation for immigrant service workers who make possible our common life.

Fourth Sunday after the Epiphany
O God, make known your light and glory by our thankfulness for all immigrant domestic workers who contribute to the well-being of our homes and households.

Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany
O God, make known your light and glory in a reformed and more compassionate attitude towards those who seek a better home in country.

Last Sunday after the Epiphany
O God, make known your light and glory and reveal the face of your Son in all those considered aliens and yet instrumental to our nation’s well-being.

Prayer in a time of pandemic​
Loving God, throughout the Scriptures you call us to “Fear not!”, but these are troubling times for the hardiest souls. Give us courage to face the challenges of this new threat to your human family. Give us prudence, to do the necessary things to protect ourselves and others. Give us the clarity of vision to learn from this disease the lesson we are too prone to forget, that we are all connected, regardless of race or nationality or political persuasion. We pray for those who are struggling with this disease, that their health may be restored. We pray for medical personnel and first responders caring for those in need, that they remain healthy and unflagging in their life-saving work. And we pray for all those economically impacted, that they may find the resources to maintain themselves and their families.  We ask all this, trusting in your abiding love, a love that even death cannot defeat. Amen.

Written by Deacon Tom Hampson, Diocese of San Joaquin

Special Prayers for Immigrants During COVID-19

Oh Lord; in this time of Covid-19 as we take shelter in our homes, we ask you to spread your love and healing over our brothers and sisters held in overcrowded detention centers and refugee camps. 
We ask Lord that you may soften the hearts of those in authority, that them may care for our sisters and brothers in this time of crises.

We ask this in Jesus’s name. Amen

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