“Who Is My Neighbor, Really?”
Rev. Louise Green
Sunday, Aug. 25, 10:30 a.m.
Hotel La Aldea
At this week’s Unitarian Universalist Fellowship Service, the Rev. Louise Green reflects on the impact of current events and U.S. immigration policy from her personal perspective as a native of El Paso, the site of the August 3rd mass shooting of Hispanic immigrants.
A range of world religions teach that welcoming the stranger, and loving neighbor as self are foundational spiritual principles. How does this look in practice when immigrant residents in the U.S. are fearful, anxious, and embattled? If we are to be true to our highest ethical values, we must see our neighbors as worthy of the respect and love we would want for ourselves.
Hispanic families, in particular, are the target of both personal bigotry and public federal oppression. Under the Trump Administration, immigrants in the U.S. are under threat at an unprecedented level. The mass shooting in El Paso by an anti-Hispanic white supremacist came from long-standing Texas tensions and anti-immigrant rhetoric and policies emanating from the White House.
This tragedy has also proven to be an opportunity for direct response and new political realizations. The response from those on both sides of the border has been heart-warming, and the vision of this bi-national, bicultural, bilingual city reaffirmed. Congregational communities across the U.S. are rising to meet the ongoing toxic atmosphere with direct service, fundraising, justice organizing, and advocacy for policy changes. The UU Fellowship in SMA is active in welcoming deported families from the U.S. and engages in a wide variety of social justice partnerships in the region. These actions are making a real difference for immigrant neighbors and communities.
Rev. Louise Green was raised in El Paso and has worked in the SF Bay Area, Chicago, Boston, and NYC. She now lives in Washington, D.C. Louise is a Unitarian Universalist minister, yoga practitioner, and full-time community organizer with the Metro Industrial Areas Foundation in Maryland (www.metro-iaf.org)
Metro IAF organizations build broad-based power for change in communities. Organizational members are Protestant, Catholic, Muslim and Jewish congregations; labor unions, tenant organizations, and schools. Current Maryland issues include greater racial equity in public education, inclusive immigration policies, affordable housing, and a successful jobs movement.
For more information about the UUFSMA, including our Social Action outreach, weekly discussion groups, social activities, and Care Team, join us any Sunday at 10:30 a.m. at the Hotel La Aldea or visit our website at uufsma.org. Our Sunday morning Children’s Religious Education program is on summer break until September.
Our fellowship was born in 1987 when a small group of expatriate religious liberals came together to meet as Unitarian Universalists in San Miguel de Allende. The fellowship has been active and thriving ever since. Every UU church has it’s own flavor, and we are no exception. We are a combination of expats and visitors, each actively engaged and contributing to this wonderful Mexican community we love. Because there is a coming, going, and returning aspect, our spiritual community is extremely fluid. There is a magic in San Miguel which draws us in and binds us together—both as members of the church and of the larger community. Our programming is led by visiting ministers, community leaders, and church members, so the variety is lively. We have opportunities to meet as UU’s each week at discussion groups, breakfasts, luncheons, and in various other ways. Depending on the season, attendance fluctuates between 40 and 140. Our primary focus is on funding social action within the surrounding community. We love good music, good discussion, good food, and having visitors. We invite you to join us any Sunday morning.
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