Evangelical Leaders Thank Congress for Conciliation on Refugees
WASHINGTON, D.C., DECEMBER 17, 2015 — Evangelical Christian leaders are thanking Congress today for agreeing to a spending bill that does not target refugee resettlement.
In a letter to Congress, a press call, a panel on Capitol Hill and elsewhere, leaders have underscored the Christian and American value of compassion for refugees and the need to protect Americans as well as protect those who are most vulnerable. A radio ad this week sounds a similar theme.
“Congress, via the leadership of Speaker Paul Ryan, exhibited prophetic courage by not surrendering our Judeo-Christian values on the altar of expediency, said Rev. Dr. Samuel Rodriguez, President of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference.
“Local churches throughout the United States are eager to continue to welcome refugees as an expression of our biblical faith, just as they have done for decades,” said Matthew Soerens, U.S. Director of Church Mobilization, World Relief. “I’m grateful that, in coming together to pass this critical bill, Congress has not in any way impeded the ability of carefully-vetted refugees to be considered for resettlement, nor the ability of local churches partnering with World Relief and other resettlement agencies to welcome them.
“As we prepare to celebrate the birth of Christ and his subsequent flight as a refugee, fleeing a tyrannical government, we thank God that we live in a nation with a long history of welcoming those fleeing persecution, and we thank our elected officials for continuing that noble tradition.”
“Despite many differences, congressional leaders have reached agreement on funding the essential functions of government, including providing for our national security, resolving international conflicts and caring for refugees who have fled those conflicts,” added Galen Carey, Vice President of Government Relations, National Association of Evangelicals. “We are especially pleased that the agreement does not include provisions that would have prevented life-saving help for some of the most vulnerable refugees. As we celebrate the birth of Jesus, the Prince of Peace, we continue to pray for peace and to care for the victims of war.”