Local church hopes to reach DACA recipients through new program

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) – “Dia de alegria” means day of joy.

“Dia de alegria”also the name of a new program First Centenary United Methodist church members are working to put it together in hopes to reach DACA recipients.

“Several of us have seen a need to reach out to the members of the DACA and dreamers community,” church member Diana Kidwell said.

The plan is to have a program for women and one for men.

The program would include sermons translated into Spanish and a meal.

“We’re going to pull together with the Sunday school classes and offer them a lot of different things that day that will help to encourage them spiritually and emotionally and help them to understand that it is possible to live through difficult times and not always be fearful,”

Currently, the future for DACA recipients is unclear.

Some are calling for congress to act on legislation for DACA recipients while the budget is being talked about.

The DACA program was put in place by an Obama-era executive order and protects children who came over to the the U.S. illegally.

The program is set to expire in march.

“I’m just very concerned about our country being in a place where we are more concerned about what is politically expedient than what really helps human beings experience the fullness of life,” First Centenary United Methodist Sr. Minister Doug Fairbanks said.

Minister Fairbanks has not shied from the DACA issue.

The senior minister has been vocal on the possibility that the dreamers could face deportation when DACA expires.

“I believe that these young people deserve a continued opportunity to fully realize who they are and who they can be as God’s children and for also the benefit for our great nation,” Minister Fairbanks said.

Church members have not set a date on when they’ll be starting their new program, but they’re looking at sometime next year.

Categories: Chattanooga

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