July 1, 2018
“If I stay in my country, my daughters will become criminals and I don’t want to raise one more criminal. I don’t want to bury my daughters,” one woman said. We met in a migrant shelter on the path north from Honduras to the United States. Her little girls, no older than 10, were sleeping soundly on a blanket at her feet.
In today’s Gospel reading from Mark 5:21–43, we read the story of Jairus, who begged Jesus to save his dying daughter. Jairus had faith that if anyone could change the fate of his daughter, it was Jesus. So he takes Jesus on a journey to meet and heal his daughter. On the way, Jesus continues to perform miracles, healing the hemorrhaging woman. As he does so, people come from Jairus’ house to tell them that it is too late.
“Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the teacher any further?”
But Jesus says, “Do not fear, only believe.” And his daughter is healed.
Today, hundreds of parents are making journeys with their children from Central America to the U.S. border. They are fleeing violence from which their government cannot protect them and, yet, like Jairus they still want something better and have faith that God is going with them as they seek it. Despite being written off by much of the world as already being dead to the violence and the gangs, they persist in that faith.
Will we tell them not to trouble us, that their child is already dead?
Or will we represent Christ and say, “Do not fear”?
Teresa Waggener, Manager of Legal Resources, Office of Immigration Issues
Hymns to use on Immigration Sunday are available at https://mailchi.mp/d6de5aa85852/immigrant-families-944925 , http://oga.pcusa.org/site_media/media/uploads/oga/pdf/abraham_journeyed_to_a_new_country_(with_music)%5b1%5d.pdf and Sanctuary Hymn — Moran.
Learn more about the root causes of migration from Central America at www.genesisofexodusfilm.com.
Take action to stop the separation of families at the U.S./Mexico border by visiting
Today’s Focus: Immigration Sunday
Let us join in prayer for:
PC(USA) Agencies’ Staff
Let us pray:
A Prayer for the Separated Families at the U.S. Border
Reconciling and redeeming God,
we pray for children and families
separated at the U.S. border.
Protect those who are vulnerable,
deliver those who are in danger,
and encourage those who are afraid.
Change the hearts and minds of those
who establish these cruel policies.
Give wisdom and compassion to those
who are called to implement them.
Help us, in our words and actions,
proclaim this good news to all:
that nothing in life or in death
can separate us from your love
in Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.
David Gambrell, Associate for Theology, Formation & Evangelism