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Inside Washington

What happens in the halls of national government – for better or for worse – can dictate the future course of America. Along with your fellow Prayer Team members, you are to be constantly and fervently interceding for all the men and women who serve in Congress, for your military leaders in the Pentagon, and for the President of the United States, his cabinet and administration.

“Inside Washington” will equip you to do just that … with reports on the nation’s leaders and the decisions they’re considering … or have already made. We’ll examine the implications for the nation, and call you to specific prayer for those needs.

Immigration Crisis

InsideWashingtonSudden illegal surge calls for humanitarian efforts

By Diann Noles

The surge is on! While tens of thousands of families and unaccompanied minors from the Central American countries of Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador flood the southern U.S. border, the debate on what to do with them has reached a crisis point. Should they be forced to return to their home where they could be in danger? Or should they be granted “refugee” status and allowed to stay in the United States?

Recognized as three of the most dangerous countries in the world, Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador offer little but hardship for their people. Violence is abundant, but work is not. As a result, parents wanting a better, safer life for their children may resort to sending one or more family members on the long, often-dangerous journey to the United States, lured by the prospect that once on American soil, they will be able to stay.

While illegal crossings had been going down in recent years, 2014 has witnessed a spike in crossings, particularly from unaccompanied minors. The unintended consequences of a 2008 law aimed at stopping human trafficking, added to Obama White House policies that soften the border by making it easier for some illegal immigrants to be recognized as legitimate U.S. residents, are the major contributing factors to the increase. An expected 90,000 will have crossed the border by October 2014. Once here, they make their case directly to an immigration judge. However, due to the backlog of cases, it can take years to come before a judge.

To assist with the crisis, President Obama has asked Congress for $3.7 billion, with $1.7 for housing, food and transporting, and the remainder for immigration judges, legal representation, and securing the border. In the meantime, what should be done with the families, and especially the unaccompanied minors?

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) recently asked Catholic churches in California to temporarily house and feed these people – until 2016. The DHS “has reached out to the diocese and the bishop, and asked us to shelter families in transition,” Maria Christina Mendez, at the Office of Hispanic Affairs, told The Daily Caller. The diocese has offered to feed and shelter the migrants at some of their facilities, including a convent and school. “None of them are going to stay more than 72 hours, we’ve been told,” Mendez said.

“This humanitarian emergency requires, as a first urgent measure, these children be welcomed and protected,” Pope Francis said in a July 15 message. John Anderson, Communications Director for the Catholic Diocese of San Bernardino agrees with the Pope. “I would say that we’re called to do this by our Catholic faith, which says that we should come to the aid of the stranger, to the migrant. We see the humanity of these people, the fact that they’re in trouble and need help and we see that as being more important than the public policy side,” Andrews said. “They are here and they need our help. There’s lots of good places in the Scriptures where you find that message, and we’re following it. The Good Samaritan was one. It doesn’t matter if that person lying on the side of the road has his documentation. You still have to help.”

Despite the Pope’s call to action, many Catholics do not agree. “They have made the decision that they’re going to absorb the immigrants that are coming through because the federal government called the bishop’s office on Monday,” Ann, a parishioner told Rush Limbaugh when she called into his radio show to protest the action. “The church will reimburse us for any out-of-pocket expenses and we were told not to talk to anybody about it, especially the media.”

She explained they were told to remain silent, to avoid local protests. “They don’t want a lot of people there at the churches when they busload these mothers and children.”

While sympathetic to the migrants’ situation, many state and local officials – previously unapprised of the migrants’ final destinations – are concerned with the legal and fiscal ramifications of absorbing these migrants into society. “Governors and mayors have the right to know when the federal government is transporting a large group of individuals, in this case illegal immigrants, into your state,” Nebraska Governor Dave Heineman told the Wall Street Journal.

This week, please pray:

Diann Noles is a former editor and writer for Christian publications in Tucson, AZ and Portland, OR. She now serves as Public Relations Director for a major Christian non-profit organization. She and her husband Bill live in Tucson, AZ and have two sons and four grandchildren.

Your Comments

The following expressions and comments are from our members and do not necessarily
represent or reflect the biblical or world views or opinions of the Presidential Prayer Team

  1. Davon says:

    This is not related to the article above but I had difficulty understanding the seriousness of this on the executive branches prayer post: President Obama signed an executive order that protects LGBT workers from discrimination by federal contractors, with no exemption for religious organizations. The move comes after Congress failed to address the issue.

    This article from Gary L. Bauer helped me understand:

    The Continued Assault On Religious Liberty

    On Monday President Obama signed an executive order banning federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of “gender identity,” extending new legal protections to transgendered federal workers.

    This order was the result of Obama’s “pen and phone” strategy of governing. The so-called “Employment Non-Discrimination Act” (ENDA) was a key demand of the radical homosexual rights movement. It passed the Senate last year, but is stalled in the House of Representatives. So Obama decided to act on his own.

    This is a very sweeping order. As CBS News noted, “The executive order … impacts an estimated 28 million workers, or one-fifth of the U.S. workforce.”

    Moreover, many federal contractors are in fact religious charities and faith-based organizations performing social services for the government. And despite pleas from religious leaders, Obama refused to include any exemptions for religious groups. Thanks to this new order, they will now be forced to accommodate transgendered and “transitioning”…

  2. michelle says:

    tyr·an·ny noun \ˈtir-ə-nē\

    : cruel and unfair treatment by people with power over others

    : a government in which all power belongs to one person : the rule or authority of a tyrant

  3. Karen says:

    This should be no surprise to anyone in this hour and before he was in the office. The Holy Spirit revealed much before he was even in office while ramming campaigning just like he is again. Now, it is in full manifestation. He fails to hear. Only what he desires to hear. The Spirit of The Living God has spoken much through prayer, intercession and supplications and he chooses not to hear, listen or be obedient to anything The Holy Spirit is forewarning or counseling. Everything is on his terms only. He’s full of pride and is cocky. Just like the church that follows him. The Truth is speaking. The president will reap all he has sown sooner than later and those that were in agreement with him will also fill that place. Hopefully he will repent, and seek forgiveness. Some consequences will still take there place from what was sown in disobedience and from the flesh. WE continue to Life Up Jerusalem, Israel and seek Your Forgiveness for our President! Horrible. Have mercy, we ask and pray in humble hearts. Bless You Abba, Amen. To God is The Glory. Forever. Amen.

  4. michelle says:

    This is still on Davon’s comment…What I am concerned about is this is a law stickily for the gay people in mind. Which will cause people to have to go against their firmly held beliefs. Companies of all types have been able to determine if an applicant fits what they are looking for in an employee, since they are going to be representing them. For example if a company is looking for a young and outgoing marketing director with ideas which the generation will respond to…is this act going to find fault with the company because a 70 year old woman, although has the education and experience, but does not have what they are looking for as far as her mind and ideals. Many companies, like Nike, for example are targeting the younger generations and are not hiring elderly people to sell their products, at least for many positions. I doubt we are going to hear about lawsuits for this type of situation. What we will hear about is the gay, “married” teacher trying to get a job at a Christian college. While the school’s ideas for who they want teaching their students and who they want representing their org. and faith will not be honored. This is going to be all about gay rights, not non discrimination for all. What, are they going to require each Christian org. has a certain number of gay employees? This is absurd, if a person is an open gay, they are not qualified to work at a Christian org. period. It would be the same for anyone would does not believe the Bible is true and…

  5. michelle says:

    …are truly trying to live their life for God.

  6. michelle says:

    …are NOT truly trying to live their life for God. (Sorry, missing “not” in my sentence above)


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