Pastor Gavin Rogers: Walk in Love and Solidarity with Homeless and Migrants
Gavin Rogers, associate pastor of San Antonio-based Travis Park Church, had always thought he'd be a teacher. But God had other plans.
Rogers graduated from Baylor University with an Education degree, but it wasn’t long before his world changed forever. A community member in his hometown was killed by a drive-by shooting, and through the anger and heartbreak Rogers immediately looked into seminary.
Travis Park Church has housed people every night since March 2019 - over 200,000 in total - and served almost twice as many in the daytime shelter. Rogers once spent 40 days in homelessness, which propelled him into the world of social justice and forced him to ask the question, who are you spending time with in your community?
The city of San Antonio provides funding, and a group of organizations help with the work on the ground. An interfaith coalition helps at the bus station for migrants who need translation help, Catholic Charities assists with transportation to the shelter, a food bank provides meals at San Antonio Migrant Resource Center (the daytime shelter), and Travis Park Church Migrant Overnight Shelter provides housing and showers at the church.
Rogers chooses every day to be one with his community. That’s what makes him so special to San Antonio. It’s also what motivated him to spend five days traveling alongside migrants from Mexico City to Texas, crossing the border step in step with his brothers and sisters searching for a better life.
“People of faith can’t wiggle out of the immigration issue like some Christians want to do -- you don’t get to pick your neighbor.” Rogers said. “At Travis Park we believe in helping and loving our neighbors.”
Hear Rogers on NPR discussing the steps Travis Park Church has taken to address the large increase of migrants in San Antonio.