Feb 08, 2018 by Alyssa Duvall

Max Lucado, Beth Moore, And Others Call For Immigration Reform For Dreamers, Persecuted Christians

In similar efforts to last year's immigration reform campaign, several evangelical leaders working with World Relief, the humanitarian arm of the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE), took out another full-page ad in the Washington Post featuring an open letter to President Trump calling for reformed immigration policy. This year's letter with an emphasis on "Dreamers" and persecuted Christian refugees, in 2018. This year, the letter was signed by many influential voices, including pastor and author Max Lucado, Beth Moore, and pastor Matt Chandler.

Jen Hatmaker, Ann Voskamp, Willow Creek’s Bill and Lynne Hybels, and Christianity Today president Harold Smith are also among the initial signatories. More than 1,300 Christian supporters have signed the letter online to date.

“As Christian leaders, we have a commitment to caring for the vulnerable in our churches while also supporting just, compassionate and welcoming policies toward refugees and other immigrants,” the letter opens, pleading for legal protection for the Dreamers who entered the country as children, increased admittance of refugees and persecuted Christians, and higher priority for immigrants seeking to reunite with their families.

“We believe we represent a convergence of evangelical belief that care for [refugees] is a central part of our Christian faith,” said Jenny Yang, vice president of advocacy and policy at World Relief.

Evangelicals have been a supportive presence for Dreamers since last fall. Dozens of evangelical and Southern Baptist leaders gathered by Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC) president Russell Moore signed a similar statement affirming several positions, including:
“We believe it is unjust to punish children for offenses they did not commit.”
“We believe we should welcome Dreamers of good moral character and who are working hard to contribute to our country.”
“We believe our government should provide a pathway to permanent legal status and/or citizenship for eligible Dreamers.”

“As Christians, dreamers are not some abstract category for us," Moore said on Wednesday, reiterating his concerns. "Dreamers are teaching Sunday school…Dreamers are leading churches. When we see Dreamers in jeopardy, we see all of us in jeopardy.”

Moore’s October statement also emphasized the importance of the family unit: “We believe a just government works to maintain the integrity of families."

His sentiment echoed in the World Relief letter, which also asks politicians to consider families waiting for reunification, such as refugees or other immigrants applying to enter the US to be with their spouses, parents, or kids: “God ordained the family as the cornerstone of society, and we believe that our country is stronger when our citizens can be quickly reunited with their close family members. For some U.S. citizens, the waiting period can be years or even decades. We pray you will respect the unity of the family.”

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