The US-based Episcopal Church is holding a vigil in Washington DC to protest against immigration policies which have seen children separated from their parents. After initially defending the practice, US President Donald Trump said last night that the process would stop. But the Public Policy Network continued with its “all-day vigil on the longest day of the year, in recognition of the fact that any day children are separated from their parents is too long.”
The day began with a service of Morning Prayer at 8 am EDT (Midday GMT) and will continue until sunset at 9 pm EDT (1 am, Friday 22 June, GMT). At the time of going to press, the Network is in the middle of an hour-long live-stream on Facebook, providing a “virtual vigil” for people to pray and reflect on issues of immigration and asylum. “Religious leaders from a variety of traditions and denominations will speak, and Members of Congress will also be present to share in prayer and worship,” the Network said.
“We are holding this vigil to condemn family separation and to pray for all parents and children who are currently being detained,” the Episcopal Church’s director of government relations, Rebecca Linder Blachly, said. “While tomorrow we will be focused on the recent separations of families at the border, we must also remember the millions of families who have been torn apart by violence and persecution in the global refugee crisis. . .
“We continue to encourage Episcopalians and all people of faith to call on the US Congress to end harsh and harmful immigration policies and to pass bipartisan, comprehensive reform that recognises the dignity of every person.”