March 20, 2007

Pastors Convene on the U.S. Capital for National Latino Clergy Caucus

Washington, D.C.: The National Coalition of Latino Clergy and Christian Leaders (CONLAMIC), the nation’s largest Latino Christian advocacy organization representing 16,000 thousand churches in 32 States, are traveling to Washington’s Capitol Hill this week to participate in the CONLAMIC National Latino Clergy Caucus, March 21st and 22nd.

In the past five years, CONLAMIC has been an ardent supporter of comprehensive immigration reform, empowering the Latino Christian non-denominational churches with the moral responsibility of advocating in behalf of thousands of their church members, including those who are undocumented or have family members that are not legally residing in the United States.

“After five tedious years, we are very close to witnessing members of Congress duly complying with their legislative duties by collaboratively working to achieve comprehensive reform to our immigration laws,” says the Reverend Miguel Rivera, President of CONLAMIC.

Members of the Board of Delegates and Directors of CONLAMIC will convene with hundreds of members of their churches, commencing the Washington DC Caucus with a Prayer Rally at the steps of the Cannon Building (Independence/New Jersey Avenues) at the South West Corner of the U.S. Capitol, March 21st at 6:00pm.

"We will be joined by our friends, Congressman Luis Gutierrez (IL) known by the Christian Latino Church, as a champion for Comprehensive Immigration Reform. On Wednesday, hundreds of our church members will pray together for the leaders who have been working hard for this important issue such as Congressmen Gutierrez, Flake, Cannon and Senators Robert Menendez, Edward Kennedy and John McCain, on behalf of America’s business leaders, workers and families who demand a workable solution to this issue,” affirms the Rev. Rivera.

On March 22nd, CONLAMIC Board of Delegates, representing all 96 chapters in 32 States, will hold legislative briefings at the Senate Russell Building Room 325 from 9:30am to 11:30am and in the afternoon at 12:30pm to 3:00pm at the House Rayburn Building Room 2120. During the afternoon session, delegations of Pastors will lobby Congress on behalf of immigration reform, in support of this immigration bill.

In addition, the Prayer Rally will support the CONLAMIC civil rights attorneys that filed suit in Federal Court against the Riverside Township, NJ and Hazleton, PA, in order to stop this municipal governments from continuing a pattern of discrimination actions toward Latino undocumented workers and their families.

"As a result of the lack of resolution by Congress on this issue, Municipal governments have passed laws that polarize our communities and harm local economies," said Rev. Rivera.

Pastors from Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, North Carolina, Kentucky, Iowa Texas, California, Illinois, Florida, Oklahoma, Oregon, and many other states are due to arrive in Washington tomorrow for the CONLAMIC briefings, which include a White House briefing Friday morning."

We know that President Bush has advocated for the estimated 12 million hardworking Latino families in the United States and we are coming to the White House to say ‘Thanks Mr. President’,” says also the Rev. Rivera.

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