Faith In Action

Mental Health First Aid and W.I.S.E. Conference on November 1 & 2

Mental Health First Aid and W.I.S.E. Conference on November 1 & 2

Registration coming soon - save the dates! Location: Church of the Beatitudes, Phoenix

November 1: Mental Health First Aid – a training program that teaches members of the public how to help a person developing a mental health problem (including a substance use problem), experiencing a worsening of an existing mental health problem, or in a mental health crisis.

November 2: W.I.S.E. Conference – includes a keynote by Rev. Dr. Sarah Lund, workshops, basics of starting a mental health ministry, opening and closing worship, and more.

Participants are encouraged to attend both events.

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Don’t Price-gouge Kids Calling Their Incarcerated Parents!

Prison phone rates are out of control, with local 15-minute phone calls costing up to $25 in some states. For the 2.7 million children with an incarcerated parent, this often means losing essential relationships.

A new bipartisan bill in Congress would re-establish federal authority to provide the same consumer protection to communication in prisons, jails, and detention centers as there is outside of those facilities and will bring down the cost of these calls.

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Reject the ICE Raids. Resources for Congregations

Reject the ICE Raids. Resources for Congregations

The administration has announced plans to terrorize our immigrant neighbors with threatened raids starting this Sunday morning (July 14) and continuing during the week.  The effect of these capricious and callus attacks on families and children is dire and the raids stand as another example of the administration cruelly separating families.  Instead of working on compassionate immigration policies with a focus on dignity and humanity the administration continues to double down on their punitive and often violent tactics that create chaos.  These raids come from a place of fear, suspicion, and hate; living in that kind of hate is antithetical to the gospel that teaches love for humanity. 

As people of faith and as the United Church of Christ we are called to love our neighbor and right now our immigrant neighbors need our love. Here are resources to provide information, sanctuary, and advocacy for our siblings who are being targeted and threatened by these raids. 

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UCC pastor targeted for ministering to migrants sues the U.S. government

UCC pastor targeted for ministering to migrants sues the U.S. government

A prominent New York City pastor is suing the United States government for interfering with her legal right to provide spiritual support and pastoral services to migrants and refugees at the border.

The Rev. Kaji Douša, senior pastor of The Park Avenue Christian Church, a congregation of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and the United Church of Christ, filed suit Monday, July 8, against the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) for violating her First Amendment rights and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

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Chime in on a proposed rule that targets “mixed-immigration status” families.

You have until July 9 to take action on a rule that targets “mixed-immigration status” families.

While attention to the treatment of immigrants has been focused elsewhere, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has quietly proposed a rule that would impact 25,000 U.S. families by withdrawing housing assistance if a member of the family is undocumented.

This rule change impacts legal residents and citizens who are eligible for the housing assistance they are receiving. Many of these families have citizen children. The impact would be to separate families or force families to leave their home or apartment.

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New update about Hope House of Sedona

New update about Hope House of Sedona

from Rev. Cindy Parker, Church of the Red Rocks UCC:

Our plans are to purchase about 1/4 acre in Sedona and install a triplex consisting of three factory-built two-bedroom two-bath homes, each of which will be used by one family.  The families will share the kitchen and living room.  We will be able to serve six families at any given time, and estimate that we will serve 50-100 people per year. 

We have filed our formal application with HUD and, if all goes according to plan, will receive the grant money by the end of the year.  We intend to be open for business by the start of the 2020-21 school year. 

Now my request for help.  Are you aware of anyone else who has provided transitional housing primarily for families?

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First Congregational UCC Albuquerque celebrates sanctuary guest's freedom

First Congregational UCC Albuquerque celebrates sanctuary guest's freedom

Sanctuary guest at First Congregational UCC Albuquerque, Kadhim Al-Bumohammed, 66, is allowed to leave the church without fear of deportation, after his case was reopened on June 26.

After coming to the U.S. from Iraq in 1994 he was granted refugee status, but when he accidentally missed a deportation hearing in 2017, ICE instructed him to turn himself in for deportation. But he went to FCC Albuquerque for sanctuary, instead, where he's lived ever since.

After the Board of Immigration Appeals reviewed his case, his deportation order was removed.

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Support Our Immigrant Neighbors

Support Our Immigrant Neighbors

Please ask your member of Congress, as they work on appropriations legislation, to not invest any more money in policies that fuel and feed the administration’s efforts to increase border militarization and continue terrorizing immigrants. How we invest our money reflects our values as a nation, and right now those values are corrosive and harmful. This has got to stop. Congress should instead invest in policies that uplift family unity, address the root causes of forced migration, and prioritize human needs by respecting the rights and dignity of every person.

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Stand for Choice

Stand for Choice

As a justice-seeking people, we cannot remain silent while state laws transform us into a map of “haves and have-nots” with regard to access to reproductive health services. Protecting access to the full range of reproductive health care for all – including safe, legal abortion – is an imperative rooted in our deeply-held faith beliefs in social justice, moral agency, and religious liberty for all.

Please contact your members of Congress and urge them to cosponsor and support the Women’s Health Protection Act.

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Our Whole Lives program beginning this fall

Our Whole Lives program beginning this fall

Our Whole Lives (OWL) is set of human sexuality curricula across many age levels that is published jointly by the Unitarian Universalist Association and the United Church of Christ. OWL combines accurate and straightforward information about sexuality with a set of core values:  self-worth, sexual health, responsibility, and justice & inclusivity. OWL facilitators are trained specifically to lead this program and teach in teams.

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Lutheran Social Services is in desperate need

Lutheran Social Services is in desperate need

Lutheran Social Services is in desperate need of more churches to host groups of 30-100 migrants on a regularly scheduled basis. Congregations do not need to provide a physical location.  A space in Glendale for hosting migrants Sunday through Thursday is available. But it is sitting empty many days due to a lack of groups to serve as hosts.  

Read on to see the ways you can help.

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Asylum Hospitality Opportunity This Weekend

On Saturday, June 29, Ktizo United Church of Christ, in partnership with Shadow Rock UCC, Pinnacle Presbyterian and Brophy Prep communities, will welcome an estimated 35 refugees from Central America seeking asylum in the United States.

There are many ways to serve from helping to translate if you speak Spanish, to driving them to the bus station or Sky Harbor International Airport, serving meals, cleaning cots, laundering blankets and towels, bringing clothes, shoes, diapers, food, toys and games to emptying trash and washing dishes.

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