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Immigration

From its early days as a band of Puritan exiles to its contemporary role as a champion of social justice issues, the evangelical movement has long been concerned with the plight of the outsider. Nearly two million people enter the United States every year, many of them illegally, with an annual waiting list of over 15 million. Growing numbers of international refugees, a sprawling Mexican border, and the proliferation of drugs and terrorism lend urgency to the situation. With the 2010 enactment of Arizona’s anti-illegal immigration Senate Bill 1070, parties on all sides began calling for reform at the national level, leaving evangelicals—particularly the burgeoning Hispanic church—torn between the extension of grace and the execution of justice.

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  • Suburban attorney indicted for falsifying asylum requests - Chicago Tribune
    DeKelaita, himself a Christian born in Iraq, has won asylum for hundreds of Iraqi Christians facing potential deportation, according to a 2008 Los Angeles Times story. He's been a prominent local advocate for Christians in Iraq, speaking publicly and writing articles posted online about their persecution.
  • Pilgrims: Immigrant religion in Pittsburgh
    Some American churches are actively evangelizing among the newcomers — seeing a historic moment in which the populations of the once-distant mission fields are now in their own backyards. Some immigrants themselves are proselytizing among their own ethnic and language groups and their U.S.-born neighbors. Many faith-based social-service organizations forbid proselytizing in their work with immigrants and refugees, but some congregations do evangelize while also offering practical aid such as food, clothing and English lessons.

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