In the month of June, join the Episcopal Church Office of Government Relations and Episcopal Migration Ministries for Love God, Love Neighbor: Episcopal Month of Action, a series of webinars to learn and advocate with and on behalf of immigrants, DACA recipients, refugees, and asylum seekers.
Newcomers contribute greatly to U.S. communities, enriching our common life, strengthening the U.S. economy, and bringing joy as they join and reunite with families and friends. And yet, immigrants, asylum seekers, and refugees face a wide array of challenges, including federal policies and legislation that are outdated and do not address the realities of immigrants in America today. As the Episcopal Branch of the Jesus Movement, we are called to advocate with and for our siblings seeking safety and a better life in the United States.
Participants may choose to attend one or more of the webinars offered. Registration is required here.
June 7-13: Episcopal Action on DACA Week WEBINAR: June 9, 3:30-5:00pm Eastern Time
June 14-20: Episcopal Action on Resettlement Week WEBINAR: June 16, 3:30-5:00pm Eastern Time
June 21-27: Episcopal Action on Asylum Week WEBINAR: June 23, 3:30-5:00pm Eastern Time
Webinar: Immigrant Detention during COVID-19: Prophetic Action & Compassionate Response
Tuesday, May 19 4-5:15 PM ET
Join the Office of Government Relations and Episcopal Migration Ministries on Tuesday, May 19 at 4P ET for Immigrant Detention during COVID-19: Prophetic Action & Compassionate Response. This seventy-five-minute webinar will include clergy and lay leaders from the Dioceses of Georgia, Ohio, and Western Louisiana with professional and ministry background in different models of detention visitation ministry.
“For four years, I have walked alongside women and men suffering in immigrant detention centers and have witnessed directly the inhumane and unjust conditions they endure as they await court hearings or deportation,” said Leeann Culbreath, Deacon at St. Barnabas Episcopal Church in Valdosta, Georgia. “As the coronavirus spreads, they are trapped in crowded dorms with extremely limited medical care while corrections corporations profit from their detention. Through their desperate voices crying out for help in this moment, Jesus invites the church to join his ministry of liberation: to bring good news to the poor, to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free.”
The online presentation will provide viewers with an understanding of our country’s immigration detention system, including reports of inhumane conditions and privately-owned prison facilities; an understanding of the reasons immigrants may be detained and how they may be released; and, a discussion of the current situation in detention facilities during COVID-19.
“Although we are not a parish known for our advocacy work, the Spirit twice in a matter of months called us into relationship with detainees in our county,” said The Rev. Aaron Gerlach, Rector of Old Trinity Episcopal Church in Tiffin, Ohio. “I and the other presenters look forward to sharing what we have learned with you in order that you may feel empowered to do the work God is calling you to do.”
The webinar will also discuss practical actions that anyone can take to speak out for and respond with compassion to the needs of our siblings in detention. Questions must be emailed before the webinar to [email protected]
The Episcopal Church has long recognized the incredible contributions to our Church and communities by undocumented young people. Yet these valuable members of our society face the prospect of deportation if the Supreme Court invalidates the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Episcopalians can stand with our DACAmented friends by joining the Office of Government Relations’ Rushad Thomas and Episcopal Migration Ministries’ Kendall Martin and Allison Duvall from 12:00pm ET to 2:00pm ET on April 16, Episcopal DACA Action Day, in urging our lawmakers to protect undocumented people brought to the United States as children. This two-hour webinar will include a policy briefing, advocacy training, and conclude with all participants taking advocacy action steps together to ask Congress to pass the Dream Act. Register today, and encourage members of your congregation and diocese to join you in #episcopaladvocacy.
For access to the recording and resources related to this webinar, please reach out directly to Allison Duvall, Manager for Church Relations and Engagement.
As an official partner of Census 2020, The Episcopal Church can help make the count as accurate as possible, but we need you to help us do that. The census count is critical to many issues that Episcopalians care about, including walking alongside immigrants. 132 federal programs plus private businesses, state, and local initiatives depend on Census data for effective distribution of resources, while congressional seats are apportioned according to the Census count. Undercounting immigrants and immigrant communities can negatively impact their access to these programs, disrupt the implementation of civil rights laws, and diminish political representation. Watch the recording of this webinar here.
Immigration Policy Update Webinar – January 28, 4PM EST
Migration policy is a fast-moving issue space, with new developments breaking all the time. Join Rushad Thomas, migration policy advisor in The Episcopal Church’s Office of Government Relations, for this webinar to explore the changing contours of immigration policy in recent days. We’ll discuss trends in immigrant detention, changes to asylum rules, developments with the refugee admissions program, and so much more.
Intro to Supporting Asylum Seekers: A Toolkit for Congregations
This webinar aired live on Thursday, December 12, 2019. It provides an overview and introduction to the new resource, Supporting Asylum Seekers: A Toolkit for Congregations. Presenters and practitioners from across the country and The Episcopal Church spoke to group discernment, ministry models, and important considerations when engaging in ministry with asylum seekers.
Entertaining Angels Unaware: A Migration Policy Update.
As Christians, we are called to love our neighbors as ourselves, welcome the stranger, and acknowledge that whatever we do for the least of these, we do to Christ. Join Policy Advisor Rushad Thomas from The Episcopal Church’s Office of Government Relations as he provides an overview of the migration policy landscape on Capitol Hill. In this webinar Thomas will explore everything from DACA and public charge to refugees and family separation, all with a focus on connecting the Church’s public policy positions back to our baptismal promise to proclaim the Good News of God in Christ, seek and serve Christ in all persons, and respect the dignity of every human being.
PiW Virtual Workshops are interactive online learning events for PiW members to come together with a practitioner, expert, and/or conversation facilitator to learn, share best practices and ideas, and be in dialogue with one another around a common theme or topic. Unlike webinars, which can allow for passive audience engagement, PiW Virtual Workshops require the active engagement of participants in a virtual “workshop-style” environment. Sign up for PiW here.
Galilee Ministries of East Charlotte is a ministry of the Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina, birthed through the identification of assets and intentional conversation with the community. Today, just four years later, Galilee Ministries serves over 700 people a week in multiple ways that include providing services for refugees and immigrants while connecting Episcopal and other congregations to their neighbors. Their mission is one of community building and radical hospitality. You are invited to learn from their story in this interactive workshop. The workshop will include both presentations and dialogue among participants.
Participants are invited to read the attached document from the Alban Institute (it’s designed for use with groups, but you can also, for purposes of this virtual workshop, use it as an individual to think about assets) and are asked to prepare 2 minute responses to the following questions:
What assets does your organization currently possess?
How does your organization determine what types of services, ministries or programs it will offer?
How does your organization currently work with the community?
Virtual Workshop Presenters:
The Rev. Rebecca R. Yarbrough was one of the team of deacons who began Galilee Ministries of East Charlotte, and nowserves as Chair of the Galilee Board. As former Deacon at St. Alban’s, Davidson, and current deacon at The Chapel of Christ the King in downtown Charlotte, she loves bringing people and organizations together to meet community needs, leading to the start of bi-lingual pre-school, expanding a domestic violence program, and other new ministries. She has worked for two regional Councils of Governments since 1975, as a regional planner and project manager first in emergency services, and later in transportation, environmental planning, and regional visioning, developing grants to fund the projects. Rebecca also serves on Diocesan Council, the Bishop’s Committee on the Diaconate, the Chartered Committee on Global Missions, and chairs the Costa Rica Companion Diocese Committee. She graduated summa cum laude from Queens College (with a semester at American University) and completed the UNC School of Government’s County Administration program. She and husband David, her high-school sweetheart, have grown twin daughters, Nancy and Kathy, a very active Black Lab, and a grand-kitty.
Toni Hagerman serves as Executive Director of Galilee Ministries of East Charlotte. Before coming to Galilee, Toni enjoyed two previous careers, as a commercial real estate paralegal and as a certified educator in the Presbyterian Church (USA). She is a trained spiritual director and offers spiritual friendship and retreat leadership at Galilee Center. Toni is an avid gardener and is happy to indulge this passion in helping to oversee the Galilee Gardens. She has earned degrees and certificates from James Madison University, Pfeiffer University and Columbia Theological Seminary (Decatur, GA). She has three grown daughters, a wonderful husband, a spoiled dog, and a flock of backyard chickens.
“U.S. Immigration – The Basics” is a 50-minute overview of U.S. Immigration history, laws, and system. Whether you’re working with refugees, immigrants, the unauthorized, or you’re a curious citizen and want to understand U.S. Immigration – this webinar is for you. Watch the video here.
Do you ever wonder how the U.S. immigrant population has changed over time? Are you curious about the history and consequences of our shared border with Mexico? Do you know how U.S. policy has affected our immigration situation today? This fact-based presentation describes the history of U.S. immigration, our current laws and procedures, and the national immigration questions we face today. Downloadable flyer here. Discussion questions for the webinar here.
The webinar presenter: Alyson Ball is a member of EMM’s Partners in Welcome community, and graciously offered to share a virtual version of the U.S. Immigration presentation she has presented widely. Alyson holds a BA from Cornell, an MBA from Wharton, and is a resident of Charlottesville, Virginia and Green Valley, Arizona. Alyson volunteers for a variety of nonprofits and has worked with refugees, asylum seekers, and immigrant detainees. Alyson has studied U.S. immigration for over three years and has created this presentation to inform the general public about the complexities of U.S. immigration.
The Episcopal Public Policy Network (EPPN) and Episcopal Migration Ministries (EMM) hosted a webinar with guest speaker Bishop Michael Hunn of the Diocese of the Rio Grande to discuss border ministry and advocacy. We covered the latest policy changes related to the border and heard a first hand account from Bishop Hunn about how The Episcopal Church is responding to humanitarian needs. We also offered time for dialogue and questions, in addition to offering ways to get involved.
On June 18, Episcopal Migration Ministries and The Episcopal Church’s Office of Government Relations hosted a webinar about the history and present of The Episcopal Church’s legacy of refugee welcome.
Broadcast the week of World Refugee Day (June 20) and in advance of General Convention, “Our 1939 Moment: Continuing the Legacy of Welcome” offers information, inspiration, and specific ways individuals and congregations can claim this legacy and this work as their own.
Episcopal Migration Ministries and the Episcopal Church Office of Government Relations hosted a series of three one-hour webinars, Walking in Welcome: An Advent Series with Episcopal Migration Ministries on December 5 at 4 pm Eastern, December 13 at 4 pm Eastern, and December 18 at 12 pm Eastern.
Airing on December 5, Mapping the Way: Tools for the Journey provided the current state of play in refugee resettlement, a brief exploration of how to assess community gifts and assets, guidance on communicating the message of welcome, and next advocacy steps for supporting the work of refugee ministry. View here.
One Community’s Journey to Welcome: The Story of West Virginia Interfaith Refugee Ministry aired on December 13 and offered listeners the opportunity to hear how one interfaith group of local leaders have come together to educate, advocate, and provide welcome to refugees and immigrants. View here.
The final webinar of the series, Partners in Welcome: Join Us on the Way, aired December 18 and included an overview of the Partners in Welcome program. View here.