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Welcoming the “Alien” – the Test of our Humanity

Updated: May 13

Every generation faces tests of their humanity. Today, we are faced with the question of how we will respond to the arrival of the political refugees from Central America. Last week, in a conversation with a woman whose sister is a missionary in Mexico City, I was told stories about a woman who was fleeing with her daughter because gangs came to kidnap her daughter to use her for prostitution. Another story was a young father fleeing with his two little girls because the gangs came to recruit him, and if he was not going to join them, they were going to kill his family. She gave out strollers because there were hundreds of mothers in the caravan who were carrying their young children. The caravan is made up of parents who are looking for safe place to raise their families.


How we respond to the human needs of the caravan is the test of our soul and the veracity of our faith. It is not wrong to seek a better life for your children, my parents did that for me and your parents did the same for you as well. Whether it is moving to another country, or moving to the other side of the town, it is all the same; it is a search for a better place for the children grow up to be healthy and productive. The caravan should be seen as heroic parents who are willing to suffer the hardship of living in a foreign country as immigrants - for many of them not speaking the language - so their children can have a better future.


The word “alien” in Greek means, “the one who stands outside the door.” So when Jesus in Revelations says, “I stand at the door and knock,” he says he is an alien. We must recognize that the people in the caravan are just like us, looking for someplace safe to raise their families. They should be welcomed as children of God who are seeking ways to live out the full expression of image of God within themselves and their children. We must see Jesus in them. Will we send Jesus away because he is of a darker hue? Will we reject Jesus because he does not speak English?


This is a test of our souls.

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Hope on Union, United University Church is an inclusive, progressive campus and community church located near USC, Mt. St. Mary's College and LA Trade Tech College on S. Union Ave. between 22nd and 23rd St. Rooted in the love of God, and following the example of Jesus, the faith community of United University Church seeks peace with justice, and welcomes all to join the journey, break bread and share stories of hope.

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