Building Sanctuary in Madison, WI

Posted on June 1, 2018
Category: Justice
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$7,045 raised
33 donors
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Help James Reeb Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Madison, Wisconsin renovate our building to host immigrants facing deportation. We need to convert part of a larger room into a bedroom, add shower facilities, and make other changes to meet local codes. We are a welcoming and dynamic congregation that is very engaged in the New Sanctuary Movement. Can you help us take this next big step?
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Faithify Project Description

This past November, James Reeb Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Madison, Wisconsin voted overwhelmingly to support the New Sanctuary Movement by becoming a host site for an immigrant facing deportation. To answer this call of witness and action, we will need to convert part of a large multipurpose room at the rear of our church into a guest room, install a shower in an existing bathroom, and make other renovations to conform to local codes. A professional architect from our congregation has drawn up plans and solicited construction bids. We expect the cost for the entire project to reach up to $30,000. Our Sanctuary  Leadership Team at James Reeb is seeking small grants and also planning  fundraising events to generate the rest of the funds necessary to complete the project.

We are not alone in this endeavor! James Reeb belongs to the Dane Sanctuary Coalition, which organizes congregations and organizations to provide physical sanctuary to our immigrant friends and neighbors at risk of deportation. We do this as part of the national New Sanctuary Movement.

There are currently seven congregations (at four sites) that offer sanctuary in Madison. Two are Unitarian Universalist, two United Church of Christ (UCC), one Lutheran, one Mennonite and one Jewish. (James Reeb is the only potential hosting site on the east side of Madison.) A dozen other congregations and several other community organizations offer other forms of support. Plymouth Congregational UCC, our neighbor on Madison’s east side, is also partnering with us on this project. We all continue to take our lead from two local organizations, Voces de la Frontera and Centro Hispano.

Our coalition opposes mean-spirited, cruel and immoral immigration policies that terrorize communities and violate human rights.  Our faith teaches us that all people have inherent worth and dignity and that everyone deserves to live free from violence and deprivation.  When our government tears apart families, executes unarmed immigrants, and sends refugees into the hands of their persecutors, we find ourselves compelled to act. This vision impels us to stand together in solidarity with our immigrant and refugee friends and neighbors, to offer our support and help, and to provide Sanctuary to those in need. We invite you to join us in this work! Please donate generously to our Sanctuary building fund.

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