Strangers No Longer - Who We Are
(Click here for printable flyer.)
Strangers No Longer (SNL) is a network of Circles of Support formed in Catholic parishes, congregations and immigrant communities to support our immigrant neighbors and to advocate for a comprehensive and humane immigration policy. Named after a pastoral letter written by our Bishops about immigration, we are motivated by Jesus' call to welcome the stranger - a call that has been echoed by Pope Francis and Church leaders throughout time.
Working since 2017, SNL has created over 20 Circles of Support in parishes across Southeastern Michigan ranging from Port Huron to Detroit to Downriver. Seven of our Circles of Support are made up of over 60 immigrant women, who share their experiences and support each other. Additionally, youth from 12 area high schools and parish youth groups have formed a regional committee called Youth in Action for Immigration, and are creating Circles in their schools.
We are in the process of expanding throughout Michigan including Traverse City, Grand Rapids and Saginaw. Our mailing list contains over 1400 members.
Our support is shown in three ways:
Education – We educate in parishes, congregations and schools about the history of U.S. immigration policy, the effect it is having on real people, and what the Church teaches us about our call to respond.
Direct Support/Accompaniment – We work with families directly in many ways such as accompanying immigrant families to court, providing transportation, translation, and emergency financial support.
Advocacy – We advocate for policies and practices that better uphold the human dignity of immigrants. We do this by meeting with officials at local, state, and national levels.
In 2022, we revamped our board of directors to include 6 Spanish-speaking immigrant leaders. We now publish all communication including our newsletter in both English and Spanish and use a Spanish translator in all Zoom meetings.
As our immigrant membership grows, so too does our shared understanding about the trials immigrants face on a daily basis. These challenges include the inability to drive, language barriers at every turn, lack of medical support, lack of legal advice, harassment from landlords, and undeserved traffic stops. We are committed to work together to improve these conditions and create a more welcoming society.
“We cannot remain insensitive, our hearts deadened before the misery of so many innocent people. We must not fail to weep. We must not fail to respond.” Pope Francis