Children in crisis: The clergy weigh in | Arkansas Blog

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Children in crisis: The clergy weigh in

Posted By on Tue, Jun 19, 2018 at 3:24 PM

click to enlarge VL COX
  • VL Cox

The Catholic bishop of Arkansas and a group of faith leaders, Faith Voices Arkansas, have called for an end to the Trump policy of separating children from parents at the border.

Bishop Anthony Taylor of the Diocese of  Little Rock said the separations should end. and he decried the "hardened hearts" that allow it.

"This latest action of our government in separating children from their parents shows us clearly the depths of the depravity that sets in when year after year we deny people their basic human rights—in this case, the right to immigrate when desperate circumstances so require. People fleeing intolerable situations should be welcomed with open arms and a generous heart. Instead the heart of many Americans has hardened so thoroughly that we would even separate innocent children from parents who have made great sacrifices in an attempt to secure for them a better life—people in many ways no different from our own immigrant ancestors! Lord, give us a new heart and place a new spirit within us. Remove our heart of stone and give us a heart of flesh. (See Ezekiel 36:26)."

He urged that people call congressmen. I wonder if he's called one of his parishioners, Republican U.S. Rep. French Hill, who's adopted the Trump line that illegals must be dealt with firmly and the only solution to family separation is legislation that adopts the rest of Trump's anti-immigrant agenda.

Faith Voices Arkansas, an ecumenical group, issued a statement that also urged people to contact Congress.

They said, in part, that what is happening at the southern border "ignores the calling of scripture and undermines the character of God."

Also on the religious front: hundreds of Methodists have signed a letter urging church charges against fellow Methodist Jeff Sessions.

The formal accusation, issued on Monday, charges Sessions with numerous violations of the denomination’s Book of Discipline, including child abuse, immorality, racial discrimination and, for his citation of Romans 13 to defend the policy, the dissemination of doctrines contrary to the standards of the UMC. 

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