Religious faith leaders gathered together and released a statement this morning in support of immigration reform.

Minnesota’s Catholic bishops, through their public policy office, the Minnesota Catholic Conference, and Transform Minnesota, a regional network of evangelical churches and ministries from nine denominations, announced at the plaza of the U.S. Courthouse an open letter to Minnesota’s congressional representatives that “urges them to work together to pass just and compassionate immigration reform,” according to a released statement from the group.

“The letter comes as the Senate is poised to approve S. 477, The Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act,  and as the focus shifts to the U.S. House of Representatives to pass a bill that includes a roadmap to citizenship for an estimated 11 million immigrants in the United States who are currently without papers."

“Minnesota’s Catholic and Evangelical leaders’ letter is a statement of Christian conviction. It calls upon the Christian communities of Minnesota to heed the biblical command to welcome the stranger in our midst and encourages them to work for just, compassionate treatment of immigrants."

"The letter recommends five key principles that should be reflected in any bipartisan legislative solution on immigration, including an ‘equitable process towards earned legalization for foreign nationals” and giving “priority to family reunification.’”

“‘While S. 477 is not a perfect bill, it is a positive step in the right direction to put millions of undocumented workers on the path to citizenship,' said Carl Nelson, president of Transform Minnesota. “We hope that the final legislation Congress produces provides a clear road map for aspiring citizens, and helps bring them out of the shadows of society.’” 

The letter has been signed by more than 100 Christian faith leaders from across Minnesota, including all six ELCA bishops and the head of the Minnesota Council of Churches. The signatories represent more than 2 million Minnesota Christians.

Downloadable versions of the letter can be found online at the Minnesota Catholic Conference website: and