History & Resources : Immigration
2016 - 2022
In the Fall of 2016, parishioners at St Michael's began meeting to study how to respond in love - individually, as a ministry or as a parish - to the needs of migrants in our local and regional community. The parish discussed its possible role in sanctuary and in assisting asylum seekers.
In 2017, we house an Angolan asylum seeking mother and two children in the parish and helped the husband/father obtain parole from detention in El Paso. They lived with us for 10 months and we learned a lot!
In 2019, St Michael's was one of five faith-based groups that assisted asylum seekers passing through Albuquerque on their way to sponsors across the country. Remain in Mexico ended the hopes of many asylum seekers in Juarez. The City of Albuquerque funded our efforts to support asylum seekers in Albuquerque. When buses stopped coming, we received transgender asylum seekers released from detention at the Landing.
In 2020, St Michael's affiliated with ABQ FaithWorks Collaborative, assisting asylum seekers resident in Albuquerque and other marginalized populations experiencing housing insecurity. Parishioners joined Covid-safe teams of people from many faiths providing food, clothing, transportation and eviction prevention during the pandemic.
In 2021, after vaccines were widely available, we started again receiving Covid-negative male asylum seekers from around the world released from detention at The Landing in the church. We work with attorneys in El Paso, and provide hospitality, clothing, food, shelter and sometimes a phone and a ticket get them on their way to sponsors around the country.
In 2022, buses of migrant families again are being brought up to Albuquerque to go on to sponsors across the country. This is a collaboration with the City of Albuquerque using FEMA funds to provide hotel and meals while volunteers, including St Michael's parishioners, ensure appropriate hospitality, clothing and diapers, and food for the journey. This effort is part of the network of shelters in El Paso.