PREFACE ON INTERNATIONAL WESLEYAN VIEWS – This statement was adopted by vote of the delegates of the 3rd quadrennial International Conference of The Wesleyan Church meeting in Orlando, FL, USA from 11th to 13th January, 2015. The different Conferences of The Wesleyan Church are organized into an International Conference of which the North American General Conference is an equal participant, and representatives from our Conference are sent to discern on these matters which speak for all of the Wesleyan Church worldwide, not only those of us in North America.
We, the delegates of the 3rd International Conference of the Wesleyan Church agree to the following statements in dealing with foreign refugees and internally displaced persons.
We call upon our church members and adherents everywhere to show God’s love to refugees:
- Wesleyans should make themselves aware of refugee situations, and especially of foreign refugees currently seeking recognition within their country, and they should commit themselves to respond to refugees with mercy and kindness, as befitting a follower of Christ.
- Wesleyans should create social programs to reach out to foreign refugees and internally displaced persons in their country and in their neighborhoods.
- Wesleyans should lobby their government and its agencies dealing with refugee admission to provide more places for refugees.
- Wesleyans should join voices with those who seek to resist injustice, oppression and violence, with the goal of reducing the causes for refugee crises in the countries of origin.
- Wesleyans should consider peaceful civil action in situations where the national policies and immigration laws of their country are unjust and do not reflect Kingdom principles and values.
Furthermore, the members of The Wesleyan Church petition governments to promote Godly principles in refugee policies.
- The Wesleyan Church encourages governments to establish two generous forms of immigration; one for those who follow the legal process and a second for those who arrive without documents because of humanitarian crisis or persecution. We oppose the practice of deferring applications of those who seek to immigrate by legal means because of the arrival of undocumented immigrants.
- The Wesleyan Church accepts that governments will need to turn undocumented refugees back from time to time, but we urge our governments to do so only after exhausting every viable option for accommodating the refugees and never to return refugees to a place where their safety is at risk.