A letter to the NM Congressional Delegation from Ecumenical Judicatory Heads

New Mexico Conference of Churches

1019 2nd St NW, Albuquerque, NM 87102
(505)243-6234    www.nmchurches.org      nmchurches@gmail.com 

As Christians and as leaders of Protestant, Anglican, and Roman Catholic churches in the State of New Mexico, we grieve the action of President Trump to temporarily halt refugee resettlement programs for 120 days and to ban Syrian refugees indefinitely. We cannot support an immigration policy based on the exclusion of persons from Muslim majority nations. While we acknowledge the need for national security, we do not support fear and anxiety as a foundation for immigration policy. We know from our history that excluding whole groups of people based on ethnicity and religion does nothing to make us safer but rather drives us further into insecurity and suspicion.  We learned long ago from the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 and the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II and more recently from the National Security Entry-Exit Registration System (NSEERS) put in place after 9/11 that policies such as those signed by President Trump this past week will be a stain on our pluralistic country that for generations has honored the dignity of every human being.

We are compelled by Christ to offer hospitality to the stranger, food to the hungry, shelter to the refugee and compassion to all displaced individuals. For over fifty years Church World Service, Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service, and Catholic Charities Migrant Services have worked with compassion and energy to resettle asylum seekers, refugees and immigrants in New Mexico. We want to continue and, as possible, to increase these ministries. The current ban will have the opposite effect, drastically impacting the important work of our local resettlement agencies. 

Therefore, with one voice we request that President Trump rescind the Executive Order signed on Friday, January 27, 2017: PROTECTING THE NATION FROM FOREIGN TERRORIST ENTRY INTO THE UNITED STATES.   Let us work together to create communities of respect and relief for the world’s 65 million displaced persons – including over 21 million refugees – who have experienced the war, hatred and loss of family, community and vocation. Let us welcome them in the spirit of our Lord Jesus who came that all may have life – and have it abundantly.


Archdiocese ofSanta Fe Archbishop, the Most Reverend John Wester, Roman Catholic Church
Diocese of the Rio Grande Bishop, the Right Reverend Michael L. Vono, D.D., The Episcopal Church
Mission Center of the Rio Grande President, the Reverend John Williams, Community of Christ
Mission West Lead Minister, the Reverend Charlotte J. Hoppe, Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
New Mexico Conference Bishop, the Reverend Dr. W. Earl Bledsoe,  The United Methodist Church
Rocky Mountain Synod Bishop, the Reverend Jim Gonia,  Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
Southwest Conference Designated Conference Minister, the Reverend Dr. William M. Lyons, United Church of Christ
Synod of the Southwest Stated Clerk/Executive, Ruling Elder Conrad M. Rocha, Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
Interim Director the Reverend Dr.  Kay E. Huggins, New Mexico Conference of Churches