STATEMENT – Nebraska faith leaders urge compassion for child immigrants fleeing violence

For Immediate Release
August 2, 2014
Contact, Jeanne Schuler
Omaha Together One Community
(402) 344-4401
Jeff Sheldon
Communications Director, Nebraska Appleseed
(402) 438-8853
Over 50 Nebraskans gathered at the State Capitol on August 2 to support compassion and humane treatment for child immigrants fleeing violence.

Over 50 Nebraskans gathered at the State Capitol on August 2 to support compassion and humane treatment for child immigrants fleeing violence.

Nebraska faith leaders urge values of compassion, humanity for children fleeing violence

Today, a collection of more than 90 Nebraska faith and community leaders released a statement calling for Nebraska to act in accordance with our state’s values of compassion and humanity when dealing with immigrant children who have fled violence and are seeking safety in our state and country.

“We are distressed by the cries of the young mothers, children, and adolescents who have risked their lives to flee terrible violence and now are seeking safety in our state. This situation demands we act in accordance with our best values of compassion, and humanity. Nebraskans are good people and good neighbors who value peace and protection for vulnerable children who have fled terrible violence.

 “Lashing out against these children violates our integrity as a nation and as people of faith: ‘… show kindness and mercy to one another, do not oppress the widow, the fatherless, the sojourner, or the poor, and let none of you devise evil against another in your heart.’ (Zechariah 7:9-10.).

“We take seriously our government’s concerns for national security and the orderly control of immigration affairs. However, the solution does not lie in punishing the children. We must welcome our brothers and sisters seeking safety and ensure they receive the proper screening, protection, and legal counsel that our laws demand as well as the peaceful protections commanded by our faith.”

Signers of this statement are:

Jeanne Schuler – OTOC Immigration Action Team Co-Chair

Rev. Dr. Damon Laaker – Grace Lutheran Church

Fr. Thomas Glennon – Columban Fathers

Fr. Jason Emerson – Episcopal Church of the Resurrection

Rev. Betsy Bennett – Episcopal Diocese of Nebraska

Sr Valeria Lewandoski – Servants of Mary

Nathan Morgan – Director, United Methodist Ministries

Rev. Frank Rivas – First Unitarian Church of Omaha

Sr. Kathleen Erickson- Sisters of Mercy West Midwest Community

Rev Jane Florence – First United Methodist

Rev. Stephanie Ahlschwede – South Gate UMC

Kelly Tadeo Orbik – Associate Director, Creighton Center for Service and Justice

Rev. Zach Anderson – Hanscom Park United Methodist Church

Marissa Kreifels – Hanscom Park United Methodist Church

Brittany Hanson – Concerned citizen

Rev. Kimberly Morrow – First-Plymouth Church Lincoln

Rev. Lori Miller – Blue Springs UMC

Rev Eric Elnes – Countryside Community Church

Stephen Griffith – Saint Paul United Methodist Church

Reverend Kara Hillhouse

Andrea Paret – United Methodist Church

Rev. Norman F. Hunke – St. Charles Borromeo

Mary Spurgeon – First United Methodist Church, Omaha

Rev. Kim Roberts – St. Martin of Tours Episcopal

Rita Bianchi – St. Pius X Parish OTOC

Kathleen Grant, MD – OTOC Immigration Action Team

Rev. Chuck Bentjen – Emmanuel Lutheran Church, ELCA

Linda Redfern – 1sr UMC Scottsbluff

Barbara Snyder – Sidney Saint Patrick’s

Rev. Debra McKnight – Urban Abbey/FUMC

Fr. John Montag SJ – Society of Jesus

Rev. Kenneth Allen – Zion Baptist Church

Karen McElroy – Holy Name OTOC Core Team Chair

Cynthia Kritenbrink – St. Charles Borromeo

Rev. Lyn Seiser – Prairie View UMC

Deanna Holland – United Methodist Church

Lawrence Kritenbrink – St. Charles Borromeo

Sr. Margaret Stratman – Servants of Mary Sisters

Kenneth Moore- Interchurch Ministries of Nebraska

Sr. Mary Hogan – Servants of Mary

Dr. Roger Bergman – St. John’s at Creighton University

Sr. Elizabeth Hakel – Servants of Mary

Ken Reed-Bouley – Director, Creighton Center for Service and Justice

Rev. Lowen Kruse – United Methodist Church

Rabbi Aryeh Azriel – Temple Israel

Rev. Sergio Amaya – iglesia luterana San Andres

Rev. Michael Ostrom – Grace Lutheran Church

Randy and Connie Kollasch – St. John Catholic Church

Rev. Kurt Stecker – FUMC of Plattsmouth

Rev. Ron Roemmich – United Methodist Minister

Sr. Joy Delores-Weideman – Servants of Mary-Omaha

Sr. Marilyn Ross – Sisters of Mercy

Mike Poulin – St. Vincent de Paul Parish

Bishop Brian Maas – Nebraska Synod ELCA

Rev. Charlotte Abram – The United Methodist Church

Rev. Benjamin Finnell – Allen Chapel AME

Rev. Dennis Anderson – ELCA

Rev. Robert Buschkemper – Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago

Sr. Evangela Dorris – Sisters of Mercy

Robert Ramaley – Omaha friends meeting (Quaker)

Donald and Rev. Barbara Bredthauer – United Methodist Church

Mark Hoeger – Augustana Lutheran

Patricia Bass – St. Benedict the Moor

Mary McKeighan – St. Geralds Church OTOC

Mary Kalamaja – St. Cecilia’s Cathedral

Jane Erdenberger – Augustana Lutheran

Sr. Mary Clare Welling, OSM – Servants of Mary

Sr. Barbara Bruchard, OSM – Servants of Mary

Sr. Carol Kamalski, OSM – Servants of Mary

Sr. Mary Ann Murphy, OSM – Servants of Mary

Sr. Mary Ann Doyle, OSM – Servants of Mary

Sr. Carol Loring, OSM – Servants of Mary

Sr. Terese Lux, OSM – Servants of Mary

Sr. Dorothy Moran, OSM – Servants of Mary

Sr. Carol Claussen OSM – Servants of Mary

Sr. Mary Alice Haley, OSM – Servants of Mary

Robert Rademacher – Grace Lutheran

Rev. Marshall Johnson – St. Luke United Methodist

Mr. Don Zebolski – Holy Family Catholic

Fr. Mike Eckley – St. Pius X Church

Sr. Christine Szoka, OSM – Servants of Mary

Rabbi Josh Brown – Temple Israel

Roselyn Volkmer – St. Pius X

Gloria Austerberry – Augustana

Mary Kerres – St Leo

Anna Lee Welch – Concerned Citizen

Margaret Hoarty – St. Pius X Catholic Church

Rev Pamela Owens – Metropolitan Community Church

Rev. Scott McNeill – Second Unitarian Church of Omaha

Katy Salzman – St. Pius X Omaha

Todd Salzman – St. Pius X Omaha

Delores Maycock – St. Paul UMC

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