Leaders of most of the nation’s evangelical Christians made a shocking endorsement of illegal-alien amnesty today in Senate testimony. Their spokesman — the head of the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) — said high immigration is increasing membership in evangelical churches and is good for the economy.

Polls have shown that evangelical Christians in the pews are the MOST likely to OPPOSE amnesty. If you are one of them, you may want to contact your church leaders immediately. The NAE phone number is: 202-789-1011 — Fax number is 202-842-0392. The NAE email address is: executivedirector@nae.net and govaffairs@nae.net Please be respectful and thoughtful in your comments to the NAE. I would suggest that only evangelical Christians make the contacts.


Rev. Leith Anderson, president of the NAE, was invited by Sen. Shumer (D-N.Y.) to testify in favor of the Senate immigration chairman’s push to create amnesty legislation this fall. Sen. Shumer asked Rev. Anderson if many of his colleagues agree with his support for legalizing 12-20 million illegal aliens and increasing the legal immigration far higher than the 1 million a year current level (the two key components of “comprehensive immigration reform”).

Rev. Anderson answered that there was no dissent in adopting the pro-amnesty resolution on the 75-member NAE board of directors. ZERO dissent!

Rev. Anderson described the NAE as: “. . . a network of 40 denominations comprising more than 45,000 local churches located in every congressional district and every state. The NAE membership also includes evangelical universities, seminaries, ministries, local congregations, and individuals. Here is the list of the denominational members.

There is a good chance that even the leaders in your national church agencies are not really aware that their representative voted for a massive amnesty and increase in foreign worker importation.

Rev. Anderson is Senior Pastor of Wooddale Church in Eden Prairie, Minn. It describes itself as non-denominational with some Baptist connections. http://www.wooddale.org/default/index.cfm


I would note that NumbersUSA and others have made requests to NAE for several years to present our moral arguments for less overall immigration to protect the stewardship of the nation’s natural resources and to protect the nation’s most vulnerable citizens. The NAE has resolutely refused to hear any voice but pro-amnesty voices, as far as we have been able to tell.

When you read Rev. Anderson’s prepared testimony, you find much that is thoughtful, including:

Evangelicals do not condone law breaking. . . . Evangelicals believe that government is a gift of God for the common good. Borders are necessary for public order. We support intelligent enforcement of our nation’s immigration laws as long as the enforcement measures are consistent with respect for human dignity, family values and sanctity of human life. — Evangelicals President

But then Rev. Anderson told Sen. Shumer that the Gospel requires that Christians be willing to forgive illegal aliens for breaking immigration laws which means that:

We believe that undocumented immigrants who have otherwise been law abiding members of our communities should be offered the opportunity to pay any taxes or penalties owed, and over time earn the right to become U.S. citizens and permanent residents. The process of redemption and restitution is core to Christian beliefs, as we were all once lost and redeemed through love of Jesus Christ. — Evangelicals President

Furthermore, the 75 national evangelical leaders agreed that immigration laws that have allowed legal immigration to soar from a traditional average of 250,000 a year to more than 1,000,000 a year are too strict and must be changed to allow many more foreign workers to enter.


The staff at NumbersUSA are members of the Evangelical, Catholic, Jewish, Mainline Protestant, Liberal Protestant and no religious faith. We all believe in ethical systems that say it is wrong to run an immigration policy that hammers down the weakest, poorest and unemployed members of our society while making it impossible to achieve environmental sustainability. It grieves our hearts to see evangelical leaders join national Jewish, Catholic, mainline Protestant and liberal Protestant leaders who have already fully endorsed amnesty and massive increases in foreign workers and U.S. population growth.

We have no doubt that all these national religious leaders have failed in their duties of fact-gathering and thoughtful analysis. They bring discredit on their religious faiths from their sloppiness in truth seeking and their lack of intellectual integrity.

We call on all NumbersUSA members of faith to point us to leaders in their own religious traditions who are open to discussing the full ethical issues involved in immigration.

The NAE’s call for forgiveness seems to ignore the Gospel context of “go and sin no more.”

We do not call for a policy that locks up and throws away the key on foreign citizens who have broken our immigration laws. Most of us are willing to let most illegal aliens return to their home countries under no penalty whatsoever.

But the NAE has proclaimed that our forgiveness of illegal aliens should allow them to keep the very things they broke the law to steal: U.S. jobs and access to U.S. infrastructure. How many billions of people in the world would like to line up for that kind of forgiveness?

We have pled with the NAE leaders (as we have with leaders of all other faith traditions) to talk to them about how mercy shown by governments can easily create injustice against a society’s weakest members. In general the Judeo-Christian scriptures call on individuals to show mercy but governments to provide justice.

When the government shows mercy, it allows people to break the rules. But if breaking the rules harms law-abiding members of society, that mercy creates an injustice against them.

I am especially devastated by the national evangelical leaders’ callous disregard for the U-6 unemployment rate of nearly 20% — job-seekers (active and recently discouraged) who cannot find any job or who have been forced into involuntary part-time work.

It is incredible to read Rev. Anderson’s testimony talking about the failure in having enough immigration visas to fill the needs of the U.S. business community!

I am embarrassed for him and his 74 colleagues. I am sure they do not mean such inhumane treatment of their fellow Americans. And I am sure they dug themselves into this shameful hole with the most well-intentioned of shovels.

I suggest that the readers of this blog consider forgiveness toward these religious leaders while thoughtfully guiding them to see all the shades and complexities of the immigration issue to which they weren’t exposed by the NAE staff and the open-borders lobby which led them to this pro-amnesty position.