Covenanters Join Marches in L.A., Chicago

Post a Comment » Written on May 3rd, 2006     
Filed under: News
LOS ANGELES (May 3, 2006) – Two Evangelical Covenant Church conference leaders were among those participating in the immigration reform demonstration here Monday, and a Covenant pastor in Chicago says it was important that he and several students participated in the Midwest city’s march the same day.

Two walks occurred in Los Angeles, and Greg Yee and Walter Contreras found themselves near the front of the second event, walking alongside Cardinal Roger Mahoney. They were subsequently joined by other Covenant pastors participating in the march, which police say attracted some 500,000 individuals.

Contreras and Mahoney Yee is the Pacific Southwest Conference director of church leadership and development. Contreras is the director of church planting. In the accompanying photo, Contreras is pictured walking with the cardinal. To see additional photos, please visit Demonstrations.

In Chicago, Paul Corner, the associate pastor of Christian formation at North Park Covenant Church, carried a sign that read, “No human being is illegal.” Corner says his work has included ministering at times to undocumented people.

Police estimated the crowd at more than 400,000. “It was very celebrative and exciting,” says Corner, who was joined by six students from North Park Theological Seminary.

Corner believes being at the march as a Covenanter was important because, “Our history is an immigrant church. Christians have a biblical mandate to care for the sojourner in our land, and Jesus tells us that whatever we do to one of the least of these, we have done to him.”

Yee says it is important for people to remember that the immigration debate extends beyond Hispanics. “The second largest undocumented group is the Chinese,” he says. “The Chinese were the first ethnic group to be barred from this country. Thus they became the first illegal aliens and undocumented people, themselves. I choose not to forget where I’ve come from.”

Yee says the undocumented population today is comprised of people “who have become invisible to mainstream America, a whole group of people are being ignored and taken advantage of. It’s time to bring all those skeletons out of the closet.

“What’s awful is the way it has played out – people are latching on to the extremes,” Yee continues. “We’re tending to latch on to these extremes that are not being helpful.”

There was no polarization on the platform on which religious leaders assembled at the end of the Los Angeles march to address and pray for the crowd. Contreras stood next to a rabbi and an imam.

Copyright © 2011 The Evangelical Covenant Church.

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