Presbyterian Church (U.S.A) Blogs

Presbyterian Disaster Assistance

Out of chaos, HOPE

Reflection from Agua Prieta

Bill Branch, a retired pastor and Presbytery executive, is also a National Response Team member for Presbyterian Disaster Assistance. In July, Bill and his accompaniment partner, Beth Newell, participated in Presbyterian Peace Fellowship’s border accompaniment program in Agua Prieta, Mexico. The following reflection is the first installment detailing their encounters and experiences at the U.S./Mexico… Read more »

Walls and Chasms

Susan Krehbiel, PDA Associate for Refugees & Asylum, delivered the following sermon on Sunday, September 29, 2019 at First Presbyterian Church of Lansing, MI. The reflections about Elena and Reynaldo are from a trip she took to El Paso, TX and Ciudad Juarez with leadership from the Presbytery of Philadelphia immediately before she delivered this… Read more »

What Does Being a Nation of Welcome Look Like?

How do we—as a community, a church, and a nation—care for the vulnerable?   This is a question we are compelled to examine, particularly when it comes to refugees and forced migrants. Whatever your opinion of U.S. immigration policies, people (such as those attempting to enter through our southern border) are living in precarious situations,… Read more »

Rebirth in El Salvador

RENACERES, Red Nacional de Emprendedores Retornados, is a network of Salvadorans who have been returned to El Salvador from the U.S. or Mexico. It is just one of the integral partnerships that the Reformed Calvinist Church of El Salvador (IRCES) has formed in launching a new ministry to returnees (a term they have chosen for… Read more »

Respite at the Border: Many Faces with Many Voices

We would like to thank John Tieken for sharing this reflection of the visit he and fellow Grace Presbytery members recently made to the border. Members of First Presbyterian Church of Henderson, TX—John, Michele Goff, Scott Hurst, Tom Laney, Claudia Morgan-Gray, and Kathy Porter—share their observations of what refugees and asylum seekers experience during their… Read more »

PDA Visits to Ministries in Tijuana and San Diego

By Susan Krehbiel, PDA Associate for Refugees and Asylum At the end of February, PDA visited Tijuana and San Diego to learn about how local churches are ministering to and with asylum seekers who have made their way to the U.S. border in search of safety and freedom. We were accompanied by members of the… Read more »

Stories of Light in the Midst of the Darkness

The past few months have seen intense focus on the United States/Mexico border as the latest so-called migrant caravan approached, with some predicting mass riots and chaos that seemed in direct contrast to the thousands of people peacefully awaiting their chance to present for asylum. This past weekend, however, the growing desperation and frustration of… Read more »

Called To Help

In the spotlight since its mobilization in early October, the migrant caravan continues to receive media attention as it moves toward the U.S./Mexico border. Estimated numbers of the group hover around 7,000, including families—UNICEF estimates the group contains at least 2,300 children—all seeking asylum within the United States. While the story of the caravan is… Read more »

Separated Families and U.S./Mexico Border Update

Border Arrivals The number and demographics of Central American asylum seekers coming to the U.S. border through Mexico have been shifting over the past several years, at a time when the overall number of people approaching the southern border is down. One of the most significant changes was the increased number of young families, primarily… Read more »