Events Resources

Pilgrimage to Angel Island

Pilgrimage to Angel Island 2022

On Nov 5, 2022, we led a pilgrimage to Angel Island, a multi-faith spiritual journey to remember, heal & end ICE detention, convened by Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity, Center for Empowering Refugees and Immigrants, & Asian Prisoner Support Committee.

Pilgrimage is about reconnection with each other, with our ancestors, with mystery and the depth of life. We remember in order to heal, to recover collective memory, to decolonize ourselves, to restore our deeper souls. —Dr. Joanne Doi, MM.

Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity organized pilgrimages in 2010, 2018, and 2022 to Angel Island Immigration Detention Station, a national landmark that bears witness to the experiences of immigrant detainees. The Immigration Station on Angel Island (1910-1940) served to control mostly Chinese migration into the United States through a brutal and dehumanizing process. This interfaith pilgrimage explored:

  • The institutionalized othering and incarceration of people of color both in prison and detention systems, past and present
  • Discerning the role of faith responses to the immigrant struggle
  • Honoring the resilience of immigrant communities who assert their humanity and dignity.

Pilgrimage is an ancient spiritual practice in many traditions. They have evolved into modern journeys that evoke layers of meaning, collective memory, healing, and ongoing commitment to reconciliation, justice, and compassionate service. Our Angel Island pilgrimages are part of a tradition of postcolonial pilgrimages that revisit shadowed ground, sacred traces of suffering, and hope. The postcolonial pilgrim’s journey seeks restoration towards a regained wholeness by a re-centering, re-entering and recovery of history; it is a rediscovery that we are part of a living and vital collective memory. 

Angel Island Pilgrimage – More Resources

Congregational Ministry and Advocacy: the Angel Island Immigration Station Era 1910-1940 tells the little-known stories of faith leaders and religious institutions who ministered to and provided hope and physical care to immigrants who were held in detention at Angel Island Immigration Station. Their voices sought to improve living conditions, advocated for immigrants’ release, and fought for reform of unjust policies. Reading these stories kindles our spirits to be faithful and provokes us to ask ourselves: How are we to respond today? Co-edited by Rev. Deborah Lee of Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity, and Craig Wong of Grace Urban Ministries.

Angel Island Pilgrimage: A Reflection on Roots, Migration, Detention, & Border Control – a pilgrimage guide by Kenneth Schoon, at the Graduate Theological Union’s Berkeley Art and Interreligious Pilgrimage Project

Text of our 2018 Ceremony to honor ancestors, past and present, who experienced forced migration and detention.

2018 Angel Island Pilgrimage Booklet, in English or Spanish:

2018 Angel Island Pilgrimage program booklet:

Events Justice Not Jails (JNJ)

Juneteenth Celebration & Call for Reparations

We were thrilled to host our first Juneteenth celebration in the city of Los Angeles, Saturday, June 18th, 2022.

People gathered from various faith traditions, races, and backgrounds to commemorate and celebrate Juneteenth, which marks the official legal freedom of all African Americans some 157 years ago, on June 19, 1865, in the state of Texas.

The celebration at Lincoln Memorial United Church of Christ showcased African American culture at its zenith, featuring the Crown City Drum Corps, Spirituals, Spoken Word, Storytelling, and an inspiring keynote message from IM4HI’s LA Regional Director, Rev. Dr. Larry Foy. We also had letter-writing to those incarcerated with Life without Parole, COVID vaccines and a healthy fresh vegetable distribution.
We invite you to read Rev. Dr. Larry Foy’s call for reparations with a message to heal, rebuild and restore Black culture & Black dignity through the following key points:

  • African Americans are Owed a Debt
  • African Americans are Owed More than a Check
  • African Americans want the Return of Stolen Land
  • African Americans want Rehabilitation
  • African Americans want Satisfaction
  • African Americans want a Guaranteed Future

Watch the video of the message here: Rev. Dr. Larry Foy preaching. Click here to read the full speech.

Check out the amazing Reparations spoken word piece: “You Owe Me,” by FreXinet D. Johnson.

Fill your soul with the song “Freedom” by Rev. Rod and Shandra Hines from Messiah Lutheran Church of Los Angeles

Listen to Mr. Al Reevers sing the African American Spiritual, “Hold On.”

Hear the beats from the Crown City Drum Corps youth.

Don’t forget this resource: our Faith & Reparations Toolkit.

The program was live-streamed on the IM4HI Facebook Page


Pilgrimage for a Better Future

The Pilgrimage for a Better Future: From the Heartbreak of Immigrant Detention to Thriving Communities was an interfaith, spiritual pilgrimage to bear witness to the preventable human suffering caused by immigrant detention in California, as a prayer for their closures, the safe releases of those on the inside, and the transformation and thriving of local communities in our state.

From May 28th, 2022 – June 1st, 2022, a group of 35 pilgrimage participants, comprised of community members who have been detained, faith leaders, and leaders in the movement to transform carceral systems, gathered together to undertake this journey. We stopped to gather in reflection, prayer and action at the seven ICE detention centers in the state and other significant sites along the way. These facilities detain thousands of immigrants in California each year, separating families and loved ones from their communities. Immigration detention does not need to exist and local communities are in dire need of different kinds of investments for a thriving and sustainable future.

The Pilgrimage was organized by the Interfaith Movement For Human Integrity, the Dignity Not Detention coalition, local community organizers, and the co-collaboration of each participant who joined us.


We invite you to read and share the Pilgrimage For a Better Future Resource Guide in English and Español with educational resources and ways to take action that congregations, school communities, and individuals can use.

We also invite you to use the Pilgrimage Social Media Toolkit to share the messages to end all immigrant detention. We have many specific calls to action that can be amplified.

Questions about the pilgrimage? Please contact Interfaith Movement For Human Integrity Executive Director Rev. Deb Lee. Media please contact Juan Prieto.

Pilgrimage Events, Livestreams and Photos

Saturday May 28th – Pilgrimage Launch and Prayer Ceremony at San Quentin State Prison
San Quentin, CA 94964
Watch the livestream.
Photos from the event.

Saturday May 28th – Prayer Ceremony in front of Yuba County Jail
215 5th St, Marysville, CA 95901
Watch the livestream.
Photos from the event.

Sunday May 29th – Prayer Ceremony in front of Mesa Verde ICE Processing Facility
425 Golden State Ave, Bakersfield, CA 93301
Watch the livestream at Golden State Annex.
Watch the livestream at Mesa Verde.
Photos from the events.

Monday May 30th – Prayer Ceremony at Chicano Park and Otay Mesa Detention Facility
Chicano Park, San Diego, CA 92113
Watch the livestream at Chicano Park.
Watch the livestream at Otay Mesa Detention Facility (Part I).
Watch the livestream at Otay Mesa Detention Facility (Part II).
Photos from the events.

Tuesday May 31st – Prayer Ceremony in front of Imperial Regional Detention Facility
1572 Gateway Rd, Calexico, CA 92231
Photos from the events.

Tuesday May 31st – Prayer Ceremony in front of Adelanto Detention Center
10450 Rancho Rd, Adelanto, CA 92301
Watch the livestream.
Photos from the events.