GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Sunday, some West Michigan churches participated in a statewide day of prayer for undocumented children who arrive alone in the U.S.
There has been heated debate about whether the unaccompanied minors streaming across the southern border should be deported or be given an opportunity to stay legally.
But many of the children are already being offered the chance to stay. They are entered into a federal program and some of them are brought to West Michigan, where they are placed with foster families and seek asylum.
Sunday, Adam Lipscomb, co-pastor of City Life Church in Grand Rapids, led his congregation in prayer for the children, saying they were in need of shelter, safety and a future.
“I see it both as a humanitarian issue and a need for change in our policy,” Lipscomb explained after the service.
A few church-goers said they had not expected the prayer, but welcomed it.
“I think there’s so much confusion with that issue that I think turning to God and prayer is the best thing to do,” Terri Hanson said.
Michigan ranks 36th in the nation in terms of the number of unaccompanied children brought to the state. About 92 have been placed here this year. Texas has more than 4,000 and New York more than 3,300.
If lawmakers in Washington don’t reach a decision on the issue by the end of the week, it will be at least a month before they take up the issue again after their summer break.