September 12, 2007

Atlanta Prayer Vigil to Bring Together Thousands of Georgia Hispanics

Atlanta, GA- The Washington, DC-based, National Coalition of Latino Clergy & Christian Leaders (CONLAMIC) representing more than 16,000 evangelical Hispanic churches throughout the United States has once again coordinated what is promises to be an enormous gathering of members from the Latino Christian community on Sunday, September 16 at 2:00 p.m. at the Federal Courthouse in Atlanta, Georgia.

The Rev. Miguel Rivera, President of CONLAMIC will give the opening prayer in an event that expects thousands of evangelical and catholic members from throughout the state of Georgia. Christians from diverse denominations will gather in prayer as they raise their voice against Georgia Security/Immigration Compliance Act 529.

“SB 529 joins the list of the most frivolous policies that have passed in the United States. This is part of a strategy from certain extremists that have taken political advantage of developing sensationalistic policy that results in persecution of immigrants,” said Rev. Miguel Rivera.

The Georgia Association of Hispanic Evangelical Churches has reported that 35% of its Pentecostal members have left their churches and the state of Georgia.

“The intentions of Georgia’s SB 529 much like Oklahoma’s Taxpayer Protection Act 1804 are identical. They provoke panic in Hispanic communities and create fear of arrest and family separation-fear that is greatest among parents with under aged children. The a fear of losing their homes and being deported have caused thousands of undocumented immigrants to move to cities that are more tolerant or they have returned to their home countries,” said William Sanchez, President of CONLAMIC Legal Defense Fund, who will present legal action in Federal Court in the following weeks.

“The fact that Congress has failed to bring a workable solution to the immigration situation is unacceptable. They have the power and authority to pass a federal law that will guarantee the right to life to a comatose woman but cannot come to an agreement on a comprehensive immigration policy that will keep families together and protects the dignity of millions on undocumented immigrants who live and work in the U.S. Most of these immigrants are conservative Hispanics who work daily to strengthen the American economy. This is a moral issue that has motivated the Latino Evangelical Church to step forward in a united force to speak to the issue and advocate for their members before legislators and to put an end to the crisis that is dividing communities,” said Rev. Rivera.

“The Latino Evangelical congregations have decided to close their church services on Sunday to participate in this prayer vigil and we are confident that the presence of thousands of good Christians, excellent citizens of Georgia, will obligate the Governor and our policy makers to reconsider this incredible error in judgment,” declared Dr. Antonio Mansogo, Georgia Coordinator for CONLAMIC.

CONLAMIC saw a victory in the Township of Riverside New Jersey recently after the local mayor and city council voted to eliminate an anti-immigrant ordinance that was brought forth a year ago. CONLAMIC Legal Defense Fund battled the constitutionality of the law that resulted in a recent victory. The organization has turned its attention to similar legislation that has been proposed in the states of Oklahoma and Georgia.

For more information please visit: www.conlamic.org and www.conlamic.net

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