Immigration: Faithful Witness and Action
“Public witness” is a way of making a public statement and literally using our bodies to call attention to injustices, in solidarity with those who are suffering—through marches, rallies, mass vigils, or acts of civil disobedience. For many years, we have been engaging in faithful witness and action to call attention to the need for justice for migrants to the United States, based in our values of compassion, equity, and hospitality.
Build & Deepen Relationships with Local Immigrant Communities
Effective justice ministry depends on partnership. The first way to take action and ground your faithful witness is to build and deepen relationships with local immigrant communities, and find out how you can be of service. Read the story of how the Unitarian Universalist (UU) Society of Black Hawk County in Cedar Falls, Iowa, built relationships by supporting a local immigrant family. Check out the Congregations Take Action page for resources on building partnerships.
Work Toward Restoring Trust and Resisting S-Comm
Local police and jails funnel thousands of people into deportation through the misleadingly named “Secure Communities” (or S-Comm) program. Unitarian Universalist are working on the state level to stop turning our local law enforcement into ICE agents and resist S-Comm.
Witness for Justice at Detention Centers
More than 34,000 people are detained in the U.S. every day, and nearly 400,000 pass through this system every year. Isolation and abuse are rampant, and faith-based visitation programs can make a huge difference in peoples’ lives. Unitarian Universalists are engaging in public witness by holding vigils at detention centers and starting detention center visitation programs. Learn more about starting a visitation program by viewing our webinar Breaking the Isolation of Immigration Detention.
Worship, Learn, and Live Your Faith
Worship and Reflection
- "We are One" by UUA President Rev. Peter Morales, excerpted from A People So Bold (Skinner House, 2009)
- Theological Reflection: Sermons
- Worship Materials
- Restoring Trust: Breaking Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE’s) Hold on our Communities
- Breaking the Isolation of Immigration Detention: Starting a Visitation Program Webinar
- Welcoming Our Neighbors (PDF, 12 pages): An Immigration Resource for Unitarian Universalists
- Immigration as a Moral Issue Study Guide
- Immigration Reform Toolkit
- For You Were Once a Stranger (PDF, 112 pages): Immigration in the U.S. through the Lens of Faith Handbook
- Preparing for and Responding to Raids
- There is Power in Union (PDF, 18 pages): A Unitarian Universalist Guide to Supporting Worker Justice
- Cooking Together Blog: Recipes for Immigration Justice Work
Stories and Connection
- Subscribe to Immigrant Justice News or read past issues
- Read stories of immigration justice state by state throughout our faith movement
Effective justice ministry depends on partnership. UU partners for immigrant justice work, beyond the Unitarian Universalist Association, include UU state advocacy networks, the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee, the UU College of Social Justice, Unitarian Universalist Refugee and Immigrant Services and Education, Inc. (UURISE), the Arizona Immigration Ministry, and No More Deaths. UUs also form interfaith partnerships, such as with Interfaith Worker Justice, Interfaith Immigration Coalition, National Day Laborer Organizing Network, and Sanctuary 2014.
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