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"What's an American? I love this country and I want to make it better. This is my home."

When Ricardo emigrated with his family to Phoenix, Arizona, at age 8, he didn't know what to expect. "I thought it was going to be this Disney movie," Ricardo told filmmaker Nathan Clarke on one of many trips to Phoenix on behalf of the City project. The metropolitan area of 4 million didn't have the beaches and kids playing on the streets that he imagined, and the heat was worse than in southern Mexico, his home country. But when Ricardo joined his high school football team as a ninth grader, one dream—of winning both off the field and on—started to come true.

In this second This Is Our City City film based in Phoenix, the immigration debates that have divided U.S. Christians take on a human face, as Ricardo's dreams are shattered—then reemerge as a newfound vocation to work for the common good.

As you watch, ask the following questions:

1. What is the Christian view of citizenship, and how might it differ from a purely political view of citizenship?

2. What challenges, and blessings, have immigrants brought to your community?

3. How have unfulfilled dreams led to a new vocation in your life or in the life of your community?

A Christian Immigrant without Papers: Ricardo's Story

How the Mexico native's shattered dreams to play football fueled a new vocational calling.
Rethinking the $3,000 Missions Trip

Rethinking the $3,000 Missions Trip

When I learned that kids in my city couldn't swim, I started to rethink how much I'd invested in overseas missions.
Furniture Fit for the Kingdom

Furniture Fit for the Kingdom

For Harrison Higgins, building beautiful furniture is not simply a steady job but a sacrament unto God.
Faith in a Fallen Empire

Faith in a Fallen Empire

Detroit's list of maladies is long. But some Christians' commitment to its renewal is longer.
'Daddy, Why Do People Steal from Us?'

'Daddy, Why Do People Steal from Us?'

How I answered the question would prove crucial to addressing racial divides in our D.C. neighborhood.

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Displaying 1–4 of 4 comments

yellow butterfly

November 11, 2012  3:21pm

Bleeding heart alright... bleeding at Calvary so that finally 2012 years after that glorious event at Skull Mount we can show compassion and mercy and love towards our neighbors... no wonder He had to say the same thing so many times... cause our hearts only think about I, me and myself instead of the poor, the oppressed and those who can not help themselves yes like Nunya Business says your "god" forbids to be compassionate and merciful and forgiving to those breakers of the law> MY GOD the one that shed his blood at Calvary teaches me the opposite!!!!

Nunya Business

September 25, 2012  10:47am

a) No b) No c) Yes/Maybe (Christian-American) d) Been there/done that e) Too old,near-sighted, & arthritic. f) Prayer,Christian obedience & compassion,common-sense,pragmatism. g) Probably not, but that's a red herring. Mexico has a population around 120M, not billions. According to the conservative bible, Fox News, the total # in the U.S. has dropped from 7M to ~ 6.1M. h) Pragmatism. I hate the idea of rewarding cheaters! But if they've been here for years, and are living as good "citizens", it makes more sense to keep them rather than throwing out contributors to society in blind allegiance to faulty/inadequate law & policy. No bleeding hearts? Heaven forbid we do something out of compassion?

George Ertel

September 14, 2012  2:56pm

I'm guessing the points of this video are (1) if you start on a high school football team you are a Christ-justified US citizen and (2) your athletic prowess has been a blessing to the community and a challenge to your team's opponents. Not so sure about (3) the unfulfilled dreams, tho -- maybe the "new vocation" is community organizer? Of course, there are unanswered questions here. If you are not first string, are you really a US citizen under the author's Christian definition? What if you participate in a less uniquely American sport, like, say, soccer? Does that make you a citizen?

George Gardner

September 14, 2012  12:28pm

Are you an illegal immigrant (alien) ? Have your parents broken the law by coming here across the border to take advantage of assistance that someone else has paid for? Are you an American or a hyphenated American, as in Mexican-American? Are you willing to assume responsibility for thousands of dollars in college loans to get an education? Would you be willing to pick up arms if America were attacked by enemies, whether foreign or domestic? This is not really about being a Christian, it's about having a better life than people who are oppressed by tyrannical governments elsewhere. What is the solution to the problem ??? Can we allow billions of people to flood into America , looking for a better life ? Why are some "immigrants" granted amnesty on the sole basis that they could walk across the border? Someone? Anyone? Is there an answer? No bleeding hearts, please.

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