Wednesday, July 9, 2014

This Kind of Stuff Will Never be Kewl From my E-mail Yesterday

"When this story first hit our television screens, as an American, I was profoundly ashamed as I watched angry local residents shouting at innocent children with fear-filled faces," said the Rev. Linda Jaramillo, executive minister of the UCC's Justice and Witness Ministries. "However, the outpouring of care, protection, and support for these frightened children by thousands of local volunteers all across our nation renewed my faith in human generosity and compassion being demonstrated in the face of this tragic set of circumstances."

On Tuesday, dozens of congregations from the Southern California Nevada Conference of the UCC will be represented in a faith-based delegation that will travel to Naval Base Ventura County in Oxnard, Calif., that is currently housing hundreds of migrant children. Organized by the National Day Laborer Organizing Network and the United Methodist Church, the group will seek entrance into the naval base to ensure transparency and oversight at the facility, assess its conditions, and advocate for the children being held inside.

"Once we hear back from the delegation in Ventura, we will know more about the needs there and how we can assist," said Keith Clark, executive associate conference minister of the Southern California Nevada Conference. "It's a situation where we will have to assess what is being done and how we can help with the immediate situation. I'm sure there will also be advocacy for the broader issues involved."

The Southern California Nevada Conference is also urging its congregations to send supplies to the San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium, which is collecting donations to distribute to the young refugees. Items of immediate need include baby wipes, diapers, baby formula, baby food, bottles, antibacterial lotions/dispensers, juice boxes and sealed snacks.

"We are called to care for the least of these and called to greet and care for the immigrant as well," Clark said. "It's the responsibility of the faith community and the UCC to meet the needs of these strangers who have come into our midst, and to help communities understand how we can have a loving response to those who are seeking our help."

1 comment:

  1. My first impulse was to make some snarky comment about atheists and morality and God; but that would be a sign I've been keeping the wrong company.

    So: good on 'em. There were communities in California which spontaneously reacted to those ugly scenes elsewhere in their state with an outpouring of compassion. May such compassion flow down like waters, and may the President take heed and quit trying to out-Herod Herod, and start treating these people like...well, people.