Leading Evangelical Women Speak Up for Welcoming Immigrants
New Video Highlights Jesus’ Words, Urges Christians to Apply Biblical Principles
BALTIMORE — As the national political debate shifts to a focus on immigration, some of the most influential evangelical women in the country are featured in a new video designed to remind Christians that immigration is more than a political, cultural or economic issue: it is also an important biblical theme.
In a short video produced by World Relief, these leaders read the words of Jesus recorded in Matthew 25:31-46, with an emphasis on Jesus’ words of identification with vulnerable foreigners: “I was a stranger and you welcomed me.” The primary goal of the video is to encourage viewers to think in biblically-informed ways about the controversial topic of immigration, including promotion of a new Bible study guide on the theme available at www.welcomingimmigrants.org.
The women featured in the video include several of the most prominent and respected evangelical voices in the country, including Beth Moore (popular Bible teacher and founder of Living Proof Ministries), Ann Voskamp (bestselling author and co-founder of We Welcome Refugees), Bianca Juarez Olthoff (founder of In the Name of Love), Kay Warren (co-founder of Saddleback Church in California), Nikki Toyama-Szeto (executive director of Evangelicals for Social Action), and Christine Caine (founder of the A21 Campaign).
Several female leaders within evangelical denominations are also featured in the video, including Carla Sunberg (General Superintendent of the Church of the Nazarene), Jo Anne Lyon (General Superintendent Emerita of The Wesleyan Church), and Trillia Newbell (Director of Community Outreach for the Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission).
“While many think of refugees and immigration primarily as political issues, we want to challenge women within the church to approach the topic first and foremost from the perspective of Scripture, which speaks clearly and repeatedly to these topics,” says Jenny Yang, Senior Vice President of Advocacy and Policy at World Relief and one of the participants in the video. “Our hope is that they ultimately will apply the words of Jesus as they serve, learn from, and advocate with the immigrants within their communities."
The video will be released online at Facebook.com/WorldRelief at 9:00 PM EST on Monday, February 12, 2018, at which time an embeddable link will be available to press.
Jenny Yang is available for interview requests, as are World Relief president Scott Arbeiter and Katelyn Beaty, a former managing editor of Christianity Today magazine who helped create the Bible study guide that the video is promoting.
World Relief is a global humanitarian relief and development organization that stands with the vulnerable and partners with local churches to end the cycle of suffering, transform lives and build sustainable communities. With over 70 years of experience, World Relief works in 20 countries worldwide through disaster response, health and child development, economic development and peacebuilding and has offices in the United States that specialize in refugee and immigration services.