The Associated Press Press Items
Religious leaders who've been calling for immigration reform are pressing Congress to complete action on what they're calling a moral imperative. At a prayer service on Capitol Hill, Regent University President Carlos Campo asked God to change lawmakers' hearts to overcome what might otherwise be impossible opposition. Congress is preparing to break for a month-long summer recess at the end of next week without action in the full House on any immigration legislation, even after the Senate passed a bill last month that would create a path to citizenship for the 11 million immigrants already in the country illegally. The Rev. Jim Wallis, who heads the Christian social action group Sojourners, said: "How we respond to 11 million people is how we respond to Jesus himself."
Added Jim Wallis, head of the Christian social justice group Sojourners: "This is the wrong place at the wrong time" to deal with the issue of gay marriage.
Outside the chambers, on the National Mall that stretches from the Capitol to the Lincoln Memorial, gun control advocates prayed among 3,300 grave markers that they said represent the number of people who have died as a result of gun violence since the school shooting in Newtown, Conn. The religious leaders on the Mall, including several from Newtown, said that work should have started long ago.
Jim Wallis, head of the Christian social justice group Sojourners, said it's part of a "sea change" in the evangelical community, driven in part by the increasing numbers of immigrants in congregations. He said evangelical leaders have concluded that "we don't believe there are second-class images of God, and therefore we don't believe in a second-class status for people who are willing to follow an earned path to citizenship."
At the same time, the Evangelical Immigration Table announced a five-figure radio ad buy that, while it doesn't mention Graham by name, links support for immigration reform to the Biblical injunction to care for strangers.
Obama spoke during a meeting with faith leaders, an increasingly powerful part of the coalition seeking to overhaul the nation's patchwork immigration laws. The private meeting occurred as the White House tries to show it is focused on more than just fiscal issues following Washington's inability to avert billions in budget cuts and a looming deadline for keeping the government running.
Vincent DeMarco, the national coordinator of Faiths United to Prevent Gun Violence, said he hoped the governor would include a requirement that gun buyers submit fingerprints to state police.
The Christian group Sojourners is paying for ads, also going up Monday, that say: "Love your Muslim neighbors."
Two religious groups will hang ads urging tolerance alongside anti-jihad advertisements in New York City subways that equate Muslim radicals with savages. (Oct. 8)
Two religious groups will hang ads urging tolerance alongside anti-jihad advertisements in New York City subways that equate Muslim radicals with savages.
The ads by Rabbis for Human Rights - North America and the Christian group Sojourners will go up Monday