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New Sanctuary Diocese: San Diego

The Diocese of San Diego has pledged to “resist efforts to target and deport millions of undocumented immigrants, and to eliminate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.” San Diego’s annual convention approved Resolution 17-05 on Nov. 11.

San Diego is the southernmost Episcopal diocese in California, and it shares a border with the city of Tijuana, Mexico.

Jim Stiven, president of the diocese’s standing committee, wrote about the resolution:

Any church that chooses to provide aid or assistance to anyone does so for humanitarian reasons, and not in any way to flout the law. However, there is no requirement that a church providing aid or assistance ask or seek to determine their legal status. Further there is no requirement to notify anyone (including law enforcement) that such aid is being provided. If law enforcement agencies inquire about a church’s activities in this regard, the church representatives should answer honestly. If asked about knowledge of the whereabouts of some particular person who is being provided food or shelter or otherwise using church property, again, honest answers should be given. However, if such a person is using a private space (as opposed to a public space) on church property, law enforcement authorities cannot lawfully enter such private spaces without a warrant signed by a judge.

… The Episcopal Diocese of San Diego urges all clergy members and congregants and other interested persons to display Christian compassion by committing themselves to reach out to people in need.


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