November 21: Fear Not, Have Solidarity

Dear Friends,

The recent election results have understandably stirred up a tremendous amount of fear.  That is real. Understandable. We feel it too.

Although faith teachings of many religious traditions encourage us to “Fear Not,” our faith, love and understanding are stronger than fear.  We know that is not an easy thing.  There is a real uncertainty among all of us about what will happen under the Trump presidency.  His proposed immigration policies do not bode well for undocumented immigrants, Muslims, our sisters and brothers under DACA, and those who are refugees.  The proposed policies emphasizing a wall and greater enforcement will do nothing to address the root causes of migration and only will result in more deaths of those fleeing violence and desperation.

Much is uncertain, but one thing is certain: Solidarity is stronger than fear.  Solidarity gives us courage when we are afraid.  Solidarity is our protection.  Fear may still be there, but standing together in unity makes us stronger and braver to confront the challenges ahead. Our best defense is an organized community’s commitment to each other that binds us together with all and anyone put at risk.

So let us stand together in solidarity with undocumented immigrants, Muslims, refugees, African Americans, LGBTQ people, Jews, and other people who are at risk.

The State of California Legislature issued a letter expressing commitment to defend California’s history as a refuge of justice and opportunity.  We must ensure every Sanctuary City’s policies are upheld so that our tradition of fair treatment and due process for all people continues.

We ask faith communities to consider declaring themselves “Sanctuary Congregations,” “Immigrant Welcoming Congregations,” or “Beyond Bars Congregations.”  We must all know our rights in this likely period of greater immigration law enforcement and increased mass incarceration.  Our concrete and proactive acts of solidarity are needed now more than ever.

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