Immigrant Welcoming Church

Approved at the Annual Meeting on February 5, 2017:

Becoming An Immigrant Welcoming Congregation Statement

We, the congregation of First Congregational United Church of Christ, Janesville, WI commit ourselves to becoming an Immigrant Welcoming Congregation seeking to learn about, support and develop practices and programs that facilitate the respectful welcome and inclusion of all immigrants into our congregation and community.

We make this covenant understanding that it is grounded in scripture and our faith as God calls us to support our immigrant brothers and sisters:

“When an immigrant resides with you in your land, you shall not oppress the immigrant. The immigrant who resides with you shall be to you as the citizen among you; you shall love the immigrant as yourself, for you were immigrants in the land of Egypt” (Leviticus 19:33-34, adapted from NRSV); and

“When I was hungry, you gave me something to eat, and when I was thirsty, you gave me something to drink. When I was a stranger you welcomed me…” (Matthew 25:35 Contemporary English Version); and

“‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” (Mark 12:31, NRSV).

We make this covenant recognizing that the world is in the midst of a long-term refugee crisis with thousands of God’s people displaced or on the move, seeking safety, security, freedom and opportunity. We also recognize many immigrants continue to fear raids, deportation and seeing their families torn apart.

We make this covenant in support of the Wisconsin UCC Conference’s resolution to become an Immigrant Welcoming Conference that walks in solidarity with our immigrant brothers and sisters as together we welcome all God’s people.