Office of Social Justice News | January 2017

On Friday, the Trump Administration announced devastating changes to the current U.S. refugee resettlement system. The newly signed executive order effectively bans citizens from a handful of majority Muslim countries indefinitely, halts the entire United States Refugee Resettlement program, and blocks the majority of Syrian refugees from entering the U.S., among other possible measures.

Join us in prayer as we grieve alongside of our refugee sisters and brothers after today’s executive decisions by President Trump. We denounce xenophobia and ask for strength as we continue advocating for this community.

Our Savior, Jesus Christ,

You were once a refugee, when you fled to Egypt from the persecution of King Herod.

You called us to radical hospitality when you revealed, “I was a stranger, and you welcomed me.”

We grieve today with so many around the world whose lives are threatened because of their race, religion, politics, or social situation.

We cry out to you on behalf of those who are fleeing from terrorism and extremism—we think of those fleeing the tyranny of ISIS, or Boko Haram, or al Qaida. Because of the faith of those who mean them harm, they will now be barred from entry into the United States.

We mourn with those who find this news devastating — those already here who have been praying that a family member might soon join them. Those who will face renewed suspicion and bigotry in the U.S. because of this false story of danger. Those who have been in the process of resettlement to the U.S. whose dearest hopes are now lost.
God, we are a church that has long experienced your presence among us when we extend hospitality to refugees.

We cry out to you for a change. We pray that President Trump’s heart would be softened toward refugees. We pray that your church would rise up to demand hospitable policies. We pray that we might experience a miracle. Your will be done, O Lord.

God issues a call to his people: we are to welcome the stranger and defend the cause of the most vulnerable. This is a moment of critical importance.The Christian Reformed Church has a long tradition of welcoming refugees into our communities and congregations. This order could shut down this life-saving ministry—a ministry which has marked our church for five decades. We cannot remain idle; in the name of Jesus, we are called to welcome the stranger as if it is Christ himself.

Call on your member of Congress to speak boldly against this announcement today.