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Faith community responds to “important moment” on immigration

August 1, 2008, 4:45 pm | Posted by adanielsen

Quite a week for immigration activists in the faith community. Religious groups across the country took action to affirm the dignity of immigrants and call for just and compassionate solutions from their government and fellow citizens.

Responding to the May raid at a kosher meat plant in Postville, Iowa, marchers put feet to their faith in the name of justice for immigrant laborers. Not content to simply symbolize change, Jewish rabbis from several Midwestern states used the march to publicize plans making the moral treatment of immigrant workers part of new standards for kosher food certification.

We Believe Colorado stood with Denver city leaders to urge voters to say no to an initiative that would require police to conduct racial profiling against Latinos. Working together, they provided a blueprint for healthy church-state cooperation.

Catholic leaders gathered in the nation’s capital to appeal for sweeping changes in immigration policy. Comparing devastating raids to the havoc of a hurricane, they called the current approach what it is: unacceptable.

These leaders, like other people of faith, see the urgency of addressing this issue in an election year. From the NCR article:

“This is an important moment,” said Kevin Appleby, director of the U.S. bishops’ Office of Migration and Refugee Policy. “America could become more restrictive, belying our history as nation of immigrants.”

Journalists and lawmakers are becoming increasingly aware of the faith community’s courageous efforts. In fact, as people of faith step out, opinion leaders are adding their voices to the call for a just immigration policy. Hopefully, candidates for national and local office will also take notice and follow and make humane treatment of immigrants a top priority.

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