News & Media

For Immediate Release
Contact: Rhonda Smith, 202-308-0514, rsmith@piconetwork.org

DMV Sanctuary Congregation Network to Hold Jericho Walk at ICE Headquarters on National Day of Action

WASHINGTON – On Thursday, May 3, clergy, faith communities and immigrants will for the first time take part in the national Jericho Walk, an annual silent, interfaith day of prayer and action held in communities to show solidarity with immigrants who are facing detention and deportation. The 2018 walk is part of a national effort taking place in 12 major cities to support more than 40 leaders who currently are claiming sanctuary in houses of worship and opposing their respective deportation orders in 15 states.

In the nation’s capital, members of Faith in Action’s DMV Sanctuary Congregation Network are scheduled to participate in the Jericho Walk at U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement headquarters. (PICO National Network changed its name to Faith in Action on May 1).

The demonstration is inspired by the biblical Battle of Jericho (Joshua 5:13-6:27) in which believers marched around the city seven times, prompting Jericho’s walls to crumble.

The silent protest also is a precursor to immigrant rights advocate Ravi Ragbir’s next scheduled court appearance on May 11 in New York.

WHEN: 4:30 p.m. EDT on Thursday, May 3

WHERE: ICE headquarters, 500 12th St. SW, Washington D.C. (near Green/Yellow Line L’Enfant Plaza)

WHO: DMV Sanctuary Congregation Network, American Friends Service Committee, Interfaith Immigration Coalition, Church World Service, Sanctuary DMV, Disciples of Christ Refugee & Immigration Ministries.

WHAT:  Press conference followed by clergy and faith communities taking part in silent prayer and a walk around ICE headquarters.

The Rev. Dr. Sharon Stanley-Rea, director, Refugee & Immigration Ministries, Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), said the Jericho Walk is necessary: “Because immigrant rights leaders such as Ravi Ragbir have been detained and separated from their families by ICE.  Because parents like faithful farmworkers Santos Hilario Garcia and Marcelina Garcia Porfecto were killed in California’s Central Valley as ICE was trailing their van—leaving their six children now without parents to care for them. Because pastors and church leaders within my denomination have long lived in fear of removal by ICE despite their contributions over decades to their churches and communities. And because immigrant neighbors within our region—mothers and fathers of citizens and of Dreamers—must now plead before legislators to protect them from deportation even though they pose no risk to society. This injustice calls us to travel to ICE headquarters seeking justice on the National Day of Prayer.”

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