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Several Area Churches Join National Sanctuary Movement

Laurie Anderson of the Presbyterian Church of Stanley addresses the group.
Sylvia Maria Gross / KCUR
Laurie Anderson of the Presbyterian Church of Stanley addresses the group.

By Sylvia Maria Gross


Kansas City, MO – About a half-dozen churches in the area have pledged to support, and potentially shelter, illegal immigrants in danger of being deported. They're joining coalitions in several cities across the country in what's being called the New Sanctuary Movement. KCUR's Sylvia Maria Gross reports.


About a hundred people gathered near the Paseo last night under a new billboard that overlooks Interstate 70. It reads Love the immigrant as yourself. Father Pat Murphy of the Hispanic Ministries in Kansas City Kansas said this group of church leaders started meeting about eight months ago in response what they feel is an increasingly tense environment for immigrants.

MURPHY: Not only because of the Minutemen, but because of what's happening across the country, a lot of false rumors going around because of raids, so people are scared, I've heard people have stopped sending their children to school.

Participating churches are offering to help undocumented immigrants with children who are US citizens. The sanctuary movement gained national attention last month, when immigration and customs enforcement deported a woman who had spent a year sheltered by a Chicago church.


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