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Jul 09, 2014 | EDOT Staff

West Texas Bishop Appeals for Help for Detained Minors and Families at Border

Funds are needed to aid efforts to assist the record numbers of people, both unaccompanied minor children and families, who have been detained at the border seeking to enter the United States. Several cities within the Diocese of West Texas have been particularly hard hit, although the needs are not limited to those locations.

 

“I have been in conversation with dioceses across the wider Episcopal Church and five agencies that are working together on this humanitarian crisis," said the Rt. Rev. Jeff Fisher, bishop suffragan of Texas. "Our deacons are especially responsive to the plight of these children and they understand as I do that the children being held in detention centers are children of God and so they are all our children.”

 

St. John's, McAllen, and Christ Church, Laredo, are doing much to reach these individuals held in overflowing detention facilities with basic human needs and are participating in church-wide and city-wide cooperative efforts while immigration policy remains stalled in Washington.

 

Bishop Lillibridge has visited and spoken with clergy in the Diocese’s Commission on Emergency Response leaders about their response to the humanitarian needs of the children and families coming across the border. Both congregations are assembling packets and/or backpacks to help these children and families while the authorities are processing them. And both have volunteers working in a variety of ways to meet the needs.

 

The West Texas Diocesan World Mission Department is working closely with the Diocesan Commission Emergency Response. Episcopal Relief and Development has sent a $10,000 emergency grant to St. John's in McAllen. Several other dioceses have offered to help.

 

What is needed most at this moment is funding to continue to purchase things such as hygiene kits, water bottles, toothpaste, soap, diapers, snacks, underwear, t-shirts, and so forth.


 

The Diocese of West Texas has established a fund at the Jones Center to receive all monetary contributions that then can be drawn from and disbursed as needed by coordinating rectors on the sites. 

 

Donate online at: http://tinyurl.com/l2px4p5 or make checks out to the Episcopal Diocese of West Texas, noted for Emergency Relief, and the World Mission Department will make sure these funds reach those in need. Mail to: 
Episcopal Diocese of West Texas
, P.O. Box 6885
, San Antonio, TX 78209.

 

Other needs will likely arise as this does not appear to be a short-term situation, Bishop Lillibridge said, adding that there remains a need for volunteers at designated locations. Call St. John's, McAllen (956.687.6191) and Christ Church, Laredo (956.723.5714) for further information.

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