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December 15, 2016

Bishop Hagiya’s Statement in Support of Sanctuary

bishop-hagiya-featured-webThe Leadership of the California-Pacific Conference of the United Methodist Church strongly re-asserts our unequivocal support for all of our churches, ministries and institutions who commit to be places of sanctuary and hospitality for refugees seeking asylum, immigrants threatened with deportation and the break-up of their families, and all those who are victimized by the increasing acts of hateful abuse, bullying and violence in our land.

The United Methodist Church believes that welcoming the sojourner among us is a Biblical mandate.

In Leviticus 19:33-34 the Scriptures declare:

“When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not mistreat them. The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the Lord your God.”— Leviticus 19:33-34, NIV

The United Methodist Church’s Social Principles state:

“We recognize, embrace, and affirm all persons, regardless of country of origin, as members of the family of God. We affirm the right of all persons to equal opportunities for employment, access to housing, health care, education, and freedom from social discrimination. We urge the Church and society to recognize the gifts, contributions, and struggles of those who are immigrants and to advocate for justice for all.”

The global United Methodist Church declared at the 2016 General Conference the following statement:

“We oppose immigration policies that separate family members from each other or that include detention of families with children, and we call on local churches to be in ministry with immigrant families.”

We are actively working, within the Cal-Pac Conference, to grow, train and equip our network of Sanctuary Churches, our “No Estan Solos” Refugee Welcome Centers, our Cal-Pac Neighborhood Immigration Clinics, our Immigrant Welcoming Congregations Network, and our Border Ministries Team. We are also committed to strengthening our cooperative work with our interfaith and community partners as we all join together in a broad based Sanctuary Movement.

As the California-Pacific Annual Conference, we unequivocally support sanctuary for the least and most vulnerable in our midst, and we will back this support with concrete action.

For more information, contact Rev. David Farley (dfarley@calpacumc.org | 626-568-7356), Director of Justice and Compassion Ministries.

Bishop Grant J. Hagiya
Los Angeles Area Resident Bishop
The United Methodist Church

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