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West Chester Religious Council Letter to the Daily Local

by Margaret Haviland last modified Sep 30, 2017 03:04 PM


To the Editor, Daily Local News.

Letter sent to President Trump, Vice President Pence and Members of Congress, February 4, 2017 from the Co-Conveners of the Religious Council of Greater West Chester, Pennsylvania::  Fiona Allison, Rev. Annalie Korengel, Faith Woodward

The Religious Council of Greater West Chester represents approximately forty congregations in the greater West Chester area, including clergy and lay representatives from congregations that are Presbyterian, Methodist, Jewish, Catholic, Baha'i, Unitarian/Universalist, Mormon, Quaker, Swedenborgian, Muslim, Episcopalian, Lutheran, Baptist, and other faith communities.

We believe we are all made in God’s image, and our various faith traditions teach us to love our neighbor, welcome the stranger and serve the poor and oppressed. Intolerance and bigotry have no place in our community and when any one of us is discriminated against, we all feel that discrimination.

We are outraged at President Trump’s recent executive order restricting entry into the United States for travelers from seven Muslim-majority countries. We are distressed that this executive order bars admission of Syrian and other refugees, many of whom are children, who have already been carefully vetted and were looking forward at last to finding a safe haven here.

Our Council believes that this executive order violates our country’s most basic, cherished principles, threatens our global credibility, and harkens back to dark times in our past. It also puts our country at risk, threatening our national security.

We respectfully appeal to you, in every decision you make, to affirm the equal worth, freedom, and dignity of all human beings regardless of race, sex, religion or ancestry.