Matamoros immigrant ministry endures perfect storm
COVID-19 / Disaster Response / Fellowship Southwest / immigration

Matamoros immigrant ministry endures perfect storm

By Marv Knox A perfect storm of calamity—the immigration crisis, COVID-19 and a hurricane—has buffeted Fellowship Southwest’s immigrant relief ministry in Matamoros, Mexico. The needs are dire; the response is sacrificial. Since 2018, Fellowship Southwest has supported feeding projects on the Gateway International Bridge between Brownsville, Texas, and Matamoros, as well as in the sprawling … Continue reading

Hurricane Hanna, COVID-19 compound misery across the Rio Grande Valley
COVID-19 / Disaster Response / Fellowship Southwest

Hurricane Hanna, COVID-19 compound misery across the Rio Grande Valley

By Elket Rodríguez Hurricane Hanna left a trail of devastation as it tore through Texas’ Rio Grande Valley near the Gulf of Mexico July 25. Hanna dumped more than 15 inches of rain on the region, severely flooding rural areas and colonias. Hanna’s impetuous winds also wreaked havoc, overturning trailer homes and ripping roofs off … Continue reading

Rio Grande Valley churches adapt ministries to serve suffering neighbors
COVID-19 / Fellowship Southwest

Rio Grande Valley churches adapt ministries to serve suffering neighbors

By Elket Rodríguez COVID-19 not only tests the limits of medical care, economic endurance and society’s willpower, but also congregations’ ability to meet burgeoning needs all around them. Three pastors from Texas’ Rio Grande Valley experience the pandemic’s stress on their churches and communities every day. Ivan De León of Iglesia Vino Nuevo—New Wine Church—in … Continue reading

Fellowship Southwest Immigrant Relief Ministry blesses refugees in Tijuana
COVID-19 / Fellowship Southwest / immigration / refugees

Fellowship Southwest Immigrant Relief Ministry blesses refugees in Tijuana

By Marv Knox Refugee families who live in a Tijuana shelter supported by Fellowship Southwest have expressed thanks for the blessing they have received, Pastor Juvenal González reported. Since 2018, Fellowship Southwest has supported a network of pastors and congregations who minister to immigrants along the U.S.-Mexico border. The immigrants have journeyed from their homelands—mostly … Continue reading

For the sake of our souls
Fellowship Southwest / immigration / racial justice / Racial Reconciliation

For the sake of our souls

By Elket Rodríguez The voice speaking through my phone carried me to the side of a brother in the faith. He is Cuban, black and seeking U.S. citizenship. He called to ask a sad question that reflects our times: “How can I protect myself from police intervention?” His question provoked tears as I reflected on … Continue reading

Border pastors’ spouses provide the foundation of their immigrant ministries
advocacy / COVID-19 / Fellowship Southwest / immigration / refugees

Border pastors’ spouses provide the foundation of their immigrant ministries

By Elket Rodríguez The pastors on the front lines of Fellowship Southwest’s Immigrant Relief Ministry do not labor alone. Their strongest allies—their spouses—support, encourage and fortify them as they fight hunger, deprivation, exploitation, injustice and vulnerability all along the U.S.-Mexico border. These women’s tenacity, commitment and passion is unparalleled. They willingly sacrifice most of their … Continue reading

On the Ground: Fellowship Southwest immigrant ministries remain resilient in face of COVID-19
COVID-19 / Fellowship Southwest / immigration / refugees

On the Ground: Fellowship Southwest immigrant ministries remain resilient in face of COVID-19

By Elket Rodríguez COVID-19 has transformed Fellowship Southwest’s immigrant relief ministries all along the U.S.-Mexico border. Among the pastors who guide the effort, some are reinventing their ministries, others have identified new service opportunities, and still others have suffered losses and obstacles that put their work at risk. Yet they demonstrate resiliency only achieved through … Continue reading

An immigration “bottleneck,” Chiapas is home to misery
COVID-19 / Fellowship Southwest / immigration

An immigration “bottleneck,” Chiapas is home to misery

By Elket Rodríguez A crisis among global immigrants who hope—or who once hoped—to obtain asylum in the United States is playing out in desperation and hunger hundreds of miles from the U.S-Mexico border. Chiapas, Mexico’s southernmost state, is one of the world’s most important migration corridors. Races, nationalities, hopes and frustrations clash in Chiapas. Northbound … Continue reading

Despite viral pandemic, border pastors persist in ministry to refugees
COVID-19 / Fellowship Southwest / immigration

Despite viral pandemic, border pastors persist in ministry to refugees

By Marv Knox Compassion and concern, faith and fear, respect and resolve crackled across the country as pastors who comprise Fellowship Southwest’s ministry to asylum seekers talked on the phone March 25. They spent almost two hours telling each other about their work with refugees on the U.S.-Mexico border, as well as their concerns for … Continue reading