Yesterday, faith leaders and people of faith gathered at the Episcopalian Church of the Epiphany in Washington, D.C.–just a few blocks west of the UUA Washington Office for Advocacy, and a few blocks east of the White House–to pray and witness for comprehensive immigration reform.

The interfaith press conference and vigil had originally been scheduled to coincide with a White House summit on immigration with Administration and Congressional leaders. But late last week, the date of the summit was pushed back–for the second time. The bipartisan summit was scheduled initially for June 8th, then rescheduled for Wed. June 17th. Now, there’s no certainty about the new date. Organizers of yesterday’s vigil, who included Reform Immigration For America and the Interfaith Immigration Coalition, decided to continue as planned, in spite of the summit’s shifting date.

Christian, Jewish, Muslim, and Unitarian Universalist faith leaders lead vigil attendees in reflection and prayers for President Obama and Congress to have the courage to move legislation forward this year. Speakers included: Rabbi Darryl Crystal, KAM Isaiah Israel, Jewish Council on Urban Affairs, Chicago, IL; Rev. Simon Bautista, Latino Missioner for the Episcopal Diocese of Washington; Fr. Robert Wotjek, Archdiocese of Baltimore, MD; Rev. Nancy McDonald Ladd, Bull Run Unitarian Universalist in Manassas, VA; and Rabbi Noam Marans, Associate Director of Interreligious Affairs, American Jewish Committee.

After the vigil’s conclusion, faith leaders and attendees proceeded to the White House for further prayer and witness. Watch the video above to see reflections on immigration reform from Unitarian Universalist minister Rev. Nancy McDonald Ladd, who has been involved in immigrant justice work in Manassas, Virginia.

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Lisa Swanson

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