By Anyra Cano
We celebrate the start of Holy Week shouting Hosana, but soon after, we begin to feel the progression of sadness, anxiety and hopelessness. The most vulnerable, the poor, the “least of these” had been gifted a new hope, they were given the opportunity to know the Messiah, and were offered a freedom they have never known before, but this was taken away suddenly.
This reminds me of one of my students’ stories.
Recently she shared with a group of faith leaders about how the end of DACA (Defered action on Childhood Arrivals) affected her. She described that it felt like a child who was given a toy she had always hoped for, but all of a sudden that toy was taken away.
Close to 800,000 DREAMers who benefited from DACA were like those who Jesus ministered to. In DACA, they found new hope, a new life and value in the only country they have known as home. And much like those who followed Jesus, their hope was all of a sudden taken away from them. How devastated, lost, fearful and baffled Christ-followers must have felt. DREAMers and their families have felt the same since September 5, when the administration decided to end the DACA program.
Christ instructed his followers not to fear, yet they did, and if we consider how the disciples responded, those who knew Jesus intimately, why would any of the other followers react any other way? And why wouldn’t DREAMers fear?
Thankfully, in the midst of hopelessness and grief, Easter came and Jesus gloriously resurrected, resurrecting and sealing the hope his followers found in Him.
As for DREAMers, they were assured that Congress and the administration would bring forth a permanent solution within six months. Many have nervously and faithfully worked to advocate with our country’s leaders, pleading for this promise of a resurrected dream. Yet since March 5, approximately 1,000 DREAMers on a daily basis are losing their protection, work permits and their hope.
Today, we know that Resurrection is coming in the Easter story, but for DREAMers, their families, churches, and communities, Easter appears so far away.
As we consider the grief yet the joy we will feel this week, will you consider the pain DREAMers face, and intentionally pray for them, for their families, churches and communities, that they would not lose hope, but find it in Christ, through the work of His Church? Will you pray asking the Holy Spirit to guide you in how you can advocate for, minister to and love a DREAMer as your neighbor? Pray that soon, very soon, we can shout Hosanna alongside DREAMers.
Anyra Cano serves as Youth Minister at Iglesia Bautista Victoria en Cristo in Fort Worth, Texas, and is a member of the CBF Advocacy Action Team for Immigrants and Refugees.