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United Methodist Bishops to Experience Life at the Border

United Methodist Communications
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Media Advisory
May 2, 2013

United Methodist Bishops to Experience Life at the Border

San Diego, Calif.: On Tuesday, May 7, beginning at 1:30 p.m. PDT, United Methodist bishops from all over the world will visit the U.S. Mexico border to immerse themselves in the reality of life at the Southern border of the U.S. and sharpen their focus on how the church can be in ministry to persons residing there.

"We bishops carry a long biblical and historical commitment to caring for the sojourner among us. This season when the U.S. Senate is considering a major bill on immigration policy reform provides us a critical opportunity to continue to give witness to the grace and mercy of God through this visit to the immigrant communities of the U.S./Mexico border," said Bishop Minerva Carcaño of the Los Angeles Episcopal Area.

The top clergy leaders of The United Methodist Church will be joined by border community leaders, as well as leaders of the Methodist Church of Mexico and area United Methodists. News media are also invited.

Some of the bishops will visit the San Ysidro Port of Entry, the busiest border crossing in the world, as well as the border wall, the most striking symbol of U.S. border enforcement policies, and the Plaza de las Americas.

Others will cross over into Mexico and visit the Plaza del Bordo, an open-air migrant encampment that includes both internal migrants, as well as immigrants who have crossed into the U.S., been detained by the U.S. Border Patrol and have been repatriated or returned to Mexico. They will distribute health kits to the community and visit a ministry of the Methodist Church of Mexico.

The bishops will all join together at Friendship Park for a service of Holy Communion at 3:30 p.m. Some will hike 1½ miles to Friendship Park through the Tijuana Estuary, one of the last undeveloped areas in the region. The hike will allow participants to experience a bit of the terrain that immigrants crossing over into the US navigate.

News media interested in covering this event should contact Diane Degnan at 615-483-1765 for more information.

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Contact: Diane Degnan
(615) 742-5406 (office)
(615) 483-1765 (cell)

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