In this Season of Epiphany, Christians worldwide remember the Magi who crossed international borders to reveal the truth of God’s presence in our world. With this season’s message in mind, we bishops speak with one voice in professing that we believe all people are loved by God, priceless and full of amazing potential. We rebuke our nation’s president for the vile, bigoted language (the words, but even more so the intent) he reportedly used on Jan. 11 to describe certain countries in God’s beloved world.
This episode far transcends the “politics” of the moment. It speaks to the very soul of our nation and touches upon some of our dearest American values: deep respect, loving care, and welcoming hospitality toward others — especially the marginalized. We are not just grieved by the unfortunate language that was used. More troubling is the president’s assumption that our country should only care about and receive the gifted and successful of the world — along with the presumption that he knows which countries provide such. Our disagreement with the president arises from both our faith and our personal experiences with our global neighbors.
We bishops call upon all Minnesotans to join us in repudiating racism and all other forms of bigotry. We implore all 10 members of our state’s U. S. Congressional Delegation to ask the president to apologize for his unfortunate remarks, to engage with international partners in seriously addressing the global refugee crisis, and to work in bipartisan fashion toward truly comprehensive and compassionate immigration reform.
Bishop Thomas Aitken, Northeastern Minnesota Synod
Bishop Jon Anderson, Southwestern Minnesota Synod
Bishop Steven Delzer, Southeastern Minnesota Synod
Bishop Patricia Lull, Saint Paul Area Synod
Bishop Ann Svennungsen, Minneapolis Area Synod
Bishop Lawrence Wohlrabe, Northwestern Minnesota Synod
EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH IN AMERICA
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