UCA President Stuart McMillan has issued a Pastoral Statement on the legal ramifications of congregations providing sanctuary for the refugees at the centre of the Let Them Stay campaign.
From the statement –
We have been calling for the closure of the detention centres on Manus Island and Nauru for many years. The centres are breeding grounds for abuse and despair and damage people’s health. Those who are here in Australia have come mostly for medical attention. Doctors and psychiatrists have been warning the Government that return to Nauru will cause them immense harm.
Uniting Church members have joined other Christians, our friends from other faiths, and concerned Australians from around the country to call on the Prime Minister to “let them stay”. Doctors, lawyers, artists, writers, teachers, unions, comedians and more are raising their voices too.
For everyone who’s prayed, petitioned, or raised the Uniting Church banner at Let Them Stay rallies, thank you for your powerful Christian witness.
To read president McMillan’s full statement click here.
If your congregation has decided to offer sanctuary, please ensure that you have registered on the Australian Churches Refugee Taskforce website http://www.acrt.com.au. We will be in touch with you.
If you are considering offering sanctuary and have any questions, please contact Rev. Elenie Poulos, the National Director of UnitingJustice Australia at ElenieP@nat.uca.org.au.