With faith, prayer, and voice, religious leaders from all across the country led a tour of action caravan through the Borderland on Wednesday in support of migrants.
Composed of nearly 70 interfaith clergy leaders and 120 members, the “Let Our Families Go” caravan made a four-day trip to Tornillo to bring attention to border issues.
“We’re trying to find a way where we can come and support local…groups that are working on the asylum issue and working to help shut the camp down,” Rabbi Bruce Elder of the Congregation Hakafa in Glencoe, Ill. said.
Local organizations also participated and helped the caravan carry out its mission.
“They could not in good conscious stay were and wanted instead to express their solidarity and to bear witness to what’s going on here locally,” Marisa Limon of Hope Border Institute said.
Following the deadly shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, the caravan felt committed to see the immigration issues experienced in the Borderland.
“They’re here with open ears, an open heart, and an open mind to see what’s going on and bear witness and go back to their communities and say all the good that is happening and what needs to be improved,” City Council Rep. District 1 Peter Svarzbein said.
Thursday’s event marked the end of the caravan’s week-long sanctuary visits across the Midwest, including Ann Arbor, Mich. and Indianapolis, Ind.
Leaders say they wanted to recreate the footsteps of those coming to the border to seek asylum.
“We don’t want to come off as a bunch of interlopers that are coming from around the country to show up make a bunch of noise and then leave,” Elder said, “we want to work with local groups, we want to make sure this is a long term project that we’re in relationships with people.”
The “Let Our Families Go” caravan has raised nearly $25,000 that will benefit local shelters and organizations including the Annunciation House and Hope Border Institute.
The caravan plans on continuing its movement to hopefully get the governments attention.
“We are committed to continuing the conversation to how can we best support, continue to lend physical support, morale support, religious support, and at the same time, working elsewhere throughout the country on our legislators to shut that place down,” Elder shared.