For a few months, a group of folks at Old First has been talking about how in the current moment, our faith challenges us to be better neighbors towards the immigrant and undocumented people who live around us. Over and over again, those conversations have brought us to the possibility of getting involved with The New Sanctuary Movement of Philadelphia (NSM). It is an interfaith, multicultural immigrant rights organization.
These same conversations and concerns were also the inspiration for our Lenten Sunday Suppers working with the UCC Resource on Immigration and Undocumented folks.
On Sunday, April 3o, we welcome Blanca Pachecho, NSM’s Assistant Director; she will speak with us after the worship service.
She will be speaking to us about putting our faith into action to uphold values of hospitality, dignity, and justice for immigrants in our community, and how together we can build a stronger community among diverse religious, ethnic and cultural groups based on strong and mutually supportive personal relationships. Blanca will also speak about how making a public stand, offering the prophetic witness of becoming a “Sanctuary congregation,” can help the political movement for immigrant justice and help the plight of some of the most vulnerable of our neighbors. She will talk about various different ways that congregations can help — accompanying an immigrant family facing deportation, advocating for legislative and policy issues that affect the lives of immigrants, and, perhaps, at some point, offering an immigrant family sanctuary. Blanca will also speak to us about the expectations on congregations that join the New Sanctuary Movement.
Please plan to stay after worship on that Sunday, to welcome Blanca and hear about the work of the New Sanctuary Movement, as we consider if getting involved might help the ministries of this congregation. (It might be wise to bring a brown bag lunch… just in case there isn’t enough food left from fellowship hour.)
If you have any questions, please feel free to speak with Bob R., Pat M. or the pastor.