On December 2/3—the first week of Advent—over 400 of you learned about our budding relationship with Border Perspective, a ministry located in the border town of Pharr, Texas, whose mission is to inform and equip churches with a biblical immigration perspective through service learning trips along the south Texas border.

Our relationship with Border Perspective began last July with 17 New McKendree youth and adult missionaries who journeyed to “far away Pharr” on their annual summer mission trip. To a person, our missionaries were transformed by the work God did in and through them as they gained a new perspective on immigration while serving immigrants displaced by oppressive regimes. With a newfound passion for serving God’s displaced children, our missionaries have continued to lead our church family toward this new kingdom-building opportunity: a partnership with Border Perspective. 

On December 2, 62 of our church family members attended a two-hour learning session on the reality of immigration offered by Jenn Moya and Caroline Quintero, Border Perspective team members who live and serve on the Texas/Mexico border. Then, during our weekend services, Jenn and Caroline offered us a biblical perspective on immigration and God’s call to serve and offer hospitality to his displaced children. As a result, what began last July with 17 New McKendree missionaries has now spread to over 400 members of our church family and counting.

As one of the 400+ members who’ve been challenged and inspired by what I learned about the reality of immigration and the plight of those legally seeking asylum in our “land of plenty,” two eye-opening realities have touched me: First, thanks to Jenn and Caroline, I’m for the first time separating the “immigration issue” from the immigrant. Immigration is a governmental policy/political issue. The immigrant is a person…a displaced person…who, like me, is a child of God created in God’s image. The second reality is that the theme of displaced people immigrating runs throughout the Christmas story. The Holy Family—Mary, Joseph, and yet-to-be-born baby Jesus—were refugees forced by an oppressive regime from their home in Nazareth to Bethlehem. In a barn on the outskirts of Bethlehem, our Savior came into our world as a refugee! And then, when our newborn King was only a toddler, Herod’s violent regime forced the Holy Family to uproot once again and take up asylum in Egypt. That’s twice during our Savior’s early childhood that he experienced displacement at the hands of oppressive, violent regimes!

Sadly, not much has changed. Corrupt governments, violent crime syndicates, and natural disasters are still displacing families. And God still invites us, his servants, to join in “protecting the foreigners and defending the orphans and widows” (Ps 146:9).  Under the leadership of our newly formed Border Ministry Leadership Team, our vision goes beyond assisting Border Perspective financially. Our goal in 2024 is to send at least two adult teams and one youth team for a week of learning and serving alongside our new Border Perspective friends. Your special Christmas offering will help fund our church family’s budding Border Perspective partnership and help them to serve immigrant communities year-round via their “Peacemaker Fund.”

Border Trip Interest form

Caroline Quintero from Border Perspective