Commitment, Community, Cooperation

Archive for November, 2011|Monthly archive page

Undocumented & Unafraid Youth Visit Historic Montgomery, Alabama to Fight for their Human Dignity!

In Refugees & Immigration on November 15, 2011 at 10:43 am

This video created by Felipe Vargas uses the photography of Steve Pavey to capture a window into the growing immigrant rights movement for justice.

When:  November 15, 2011

Who: Immigrant Youth Justice League, The Alabama Youth Collective and the National Immigrant Youth Alliance

Where: Alabama State Legislature, 11 South Union Street, Montgomery, Ala. 36130

What: 15 undocumented immigrants, 2 undercover, 13 public

Facilitating School for Conversion at Koinonia Partners

In Uncategorized on November 6, 2011 at 1:08 pm

Last November Koinonia Partners hosted its sixth School for Conversion, a weekend course centered on Christianity as a way of life, based on radical discipleship and community. This SFC was facilitated by Steve Pavey of Communality in Lexington, Kentucky, and also featured a session led by Anton Flores of Alterna in La Grange, Georgia. Both Steve and Anton wove the theme of immigration and the need for hospitality to and solidarity with migrants into the discussion of following Jesus.  Not only did the participants gain inspiration, but they also gave us life with joy and eagerness to pursue the Kingdom in our communities. You can join this conversation by reading School(s) for Conversion: 12 Marks of a New Monasticism edited by our friends at Rutba House.

Learn more at:

“Out of the Shadows and Into the Light” – Article Published in PRISM Magazine

In Uncategorized on November 1, 2011 at 1:51 pm

Dr. Steve Pavey published a theological reflection on the immigrant youth right’s movement in the May/June 2011 issue of ESA’s PRISM magazine.  The article, “Out of the Shadows and Into the Light,” begins with a question asked by Howard Thurman in 1948:

What do the teachings of Jesus have to say “to those who stand with their backs against the wall?” asked Howard Thurman when addressing the African American experience of racism and violence of the 1940s. His answer and challenge, in his Jesus and the Disinherited, shaped the civil rights movement. The good news revealed in the teachings and life of Jesus is, wrote Thurman, “that fear, deception, and hatred, the three hounds of hell that track the trail of the disinherited, need have no dominion over them.” Jesus reveals the power of love, for self and others, that enables us to overcome relations of inequality that are perpetuated by fear, deception, and hate.

Fast forward 60 years to today’s growing nativism, xenophobia, and violence surrounding the presence of immigrants in the United States, and Thurman’s analysis of the lives of the disinherited is equally compelling here and now to those who have their backs against the wall. The experience of inequality and violence among immigrants is exacerbated for the 11.8 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States. Nearly 20 years ago anthropologist Leo Chavez described the “shadowed lives” of undocumented immigrants. With the growing public antipathy and the media construction of the “Latino threat,” living in the shadows remains an apt description and continues to be marked by the same fears and survival techniques of deception described by Thurman.

Steve ends the article with this missiological challenge:

“For us, the privileged and powerful, a radical conversion will mean discerning Jesus in the disinherited undocumented immigrants in our midst. We must repent of our anti-immigrant rhetoric and policy, seek a conversion of the broken immigration system that persecutes the immigrant community (in whom Jesus himself dwells), and begin to walk with our marginalized brothers and sisters, joining them in the light–– even as they experience a conversion from fear to freedom.”

2011 PRISM – May.June.2011