March 21, 2013

IT'S A RELIGIOUS PARTY, NOT AN ECONOMIC ONE:

Religious conservatives make moral case for immigration reform (Rosalind S. Helderman, March 20, 2013, Washington Post)

The Evangelical Immigration Table, a coalition of religious groups that represent more than 100,000 churches, is making grass-roots phone calls and a widespread effort to get Christians to read 40 Bible verses that deal with how to treat strangers and neighbors as part of a prayer challenge called "I Was a Stranger."

The name is taken from a verse in Matthew 25:35: "For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me."

The main targets of the effort are lawmakers who in the past have paid closer attention to constituent concerns about amnesty or whether illegal immigrants drive up the costs of government services.

"I think in the past many of us thought it would be the economic argument that would bring Republicans along," said Frank Sharry, executive director of the group America's Voice. "But for many Republicans . . . this has become viewed more as a cultural issue -- almost a social issue. So when you have pastors preaching that the Bible says we should welcome the stranger in 40 different ways, that becomes a very powerful message."

Posted by at March 21, 2013 9:39 PM
  

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