We’ve been praying on it. We’ve been discussing. We’ve been learning. Now, we’re acting on it – and expecting more learning, discussion and, as always, praying. In April the Church Council of First Congregational Church of Walla Walla voted to issue a Statement of Support for Immigrants and Refugees:

The First Congregational Church of Walla Walla, in keeping with the Christian principles of ‘Love thy neighbor’ and ‘Welcome the stranger’ supports the right of peaceful immigrants, documented or undocumented, to a path to citizenship. We support the sanctity of the family unit and oppose the separation of families by deportation.

“Remember how you also were strangers once” (Exodus 22:21). Most of our ancestors came to this country for the same reasons as present day immigrants: fleeing oppression and poverty, and seeking freedom. Those whose ancestors are native to this land, and those who were brought here forcibly, share and contribute to the same goals. The efforts of immigrants have made the United States the thriving, democratic nation it is today. Present day immigrants continue the dream, playing vital roles in our Walla Walla economy and community, and throughout the United States.

We further support welcoming to our country and community refugees from life threatening conditions of war, persecution, oppression, famine, drought, and other natural disasters and consequences of global warming.

As Christians, we cannot stand by silent amidst the upsurge of hatred, mistrust, and state sanctioned action against immigrants and refugees. Such currents in our society are utterly counter to the ethic and spirit of the Christ we seek to follow.

As Christians, we must show hospitality, not hostility. God’s love knows no borders. Therefore we have formed the First Congregational Church Immigrant and Refugee Support Committee to support immigrants and refugees in our community with the challenges they face in the current times.

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