We believe that all people are created in the image of God, that diversity of peoples is a rich gift to humanity, and that God must be doing something new and fresh in the massive migrations we are witnessing worldwide at this time in human history. Therefore, God has called us to welcome the “stranger” among us. Deuteronomy 10 invite us to love the stranger because we too are strangers. Here at HMC, we have affirmed that this is true for us, “we are a pilgrim people,” gathered in Houston from all over the globe for kingdom purposes. Most of us are not native to Houston, and our congregation ebbs and flows with college & grad students, and other temporary attenders. As Mennonites, we have for centuries benefited from immigration, and continue to tell our stories of migration to the US. It is humbling to acknowledge that under current immigration law, most of us with European ancestors would not have been allowed in.
Leviticus 19 puts a wonderful “spin” on the traditional golden rule, inviting us to “love the alien/immigrant as yourself.” We try to do this first and foremost by being a welcoming church to any and all peoples. We also support our pastor in his work with the Houston Interfaith Worker Justice center, a non-profit agency working for fair wages for all of Houston’s labor force.
Our denomination, Mennonite Church USA, has strong feelings about welcoming strangers, about our churches being stronger because of the immigrant community, and about immigration reform. For the Mennonite Church USA general statement on Immigration, click here.
Or, if you would like to see suggestions from Mennonite Central Committee on what fair reform of current immigration policy would look like, click here.