Submitted by Rev. Dr. Sharon Stanley-Rea, Director, Disciples Refugee & Immigration Ministries
Remembering how Jesus in Matthew 19 urged children not be hindered from accessing love, but allowed to come into his arms, I remain deeply pained that over 711 children are still separated from their parents after the two court-ordered deadlines for reunification of under five years and older children with their parents have passed. I applaud the many Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) members who have prayed consistently in private and — like Saguaro Christian Church — online for their reunification. I am grateful for each organization, individual, and congregation which has responded to meet needs of family members along their path seeking freedom.
And, I celebrate the over 2,000 Disciples who have signed on the letter with General Minister and President Rev. Terri Hord Owens to express their desire for our nation to stop practices of family separation and detention that have produced traumatic consequences for children and their parents. Please add your name here if you have not yet done so!
And during the upcoming August recess, join to share our letter, and encourage our leaders and legislators to request the administration halt such policies and instead provide alternatives to detention like Family Based Case Management. Such alternatives offer far more humane care for families seeking protections and a new life, and help us live out the respect in the Psalmist’s words that ‘children are a heritage from the Lord.’