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The Rift Grows Wide, Illegal Immigration

by Sim Lee  
12/26/2018 / World Affairs

"If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand." Mark 3:25 NIV

During the Presidency of Barack Obama, Progressive factions within Catholicism and Evangelical Protestants worked to put their hands and heads around issues like gay marriage, abortion and immigration and seemed to have been of one accord going forward. Changes in the laws since then and the election of Donald Trump as U.S President has changed all that.

A country already more divided on politics than at any other time in its history is now dividing along religious lines over the best path forward concerning immigration.

Speaking for Progressives who want to build bridges and not walls, Archbishop Jose Gomez of the Los Angeles Catholic Archdiocese says that " it is now not possible for people of faith to comprehend their national purpose". The Catholic Church has long-held immigrant welfare to be a priority concern, and U.S. Catholic Charities has assisted all categories of immigrants in health and legal concerns.*

Speaking for conservatives at the dedication of the new U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem, the Reverend Robert Jeffress of Dallas, TX thanked God (and conservative evangelicals) for making Donald Trump our President, alluding to the fact that President Trump is relying more and more upon the advise of the evangelicals on his advisory group than from the Catholic members.

Although Trumps many criticisms of immigrants have resonated with conservative evangelicals like Reverend Jeffress, they have set him back with Catholic leaders and their progressive social justice concerns.** We are a country divided along religious lines among the major denominations who either want new immigration laws to allow for more open borders, or to double down on enforcement of the existing laws.

Conservative Catholics (30% of all Catholics) and conservative evangelicals (40% of all evangelicals) still agree on core issues like religious freedom, but now they also disagree on the need to build a wall. (CCs-Opposed, CEs-In favor)

As the Progressives in Congress have no intention of funding the building more border wall, while most Conservatives in Congress see no other solution to address the problems caused by the recent immigrant caravans of immigrants, the division along religious lines continues as to whether or not to build more border wall.

*World Religion News - "Rift Builds Between Catholics and Evangelicals Over Politics", by Kelly Frazier 5/28/18

**NPR - "Roman Catholics And Evangelicals Move Apart In Their Political Priorities", by Tom Gjelton - May 25, 2018

Sim Lee is a retired NE Iowan who loves all of God's creatures.

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