The WHC UK Statement on Refugees and Migration

The WHC UK Statement on Refugees and Migration

The Wesleyan Holiness Church in the UK opposes the hostile treatment of refugees and migrants seeking refuge in our country. Founded by Caribbean migrants and with a membership primarily comprised of migrants or their descendants, we understand the challenges and hardships faced by those entering the UK.

As the UK commemorates the 75th anniversary of the Empire Windrush, the WHC also celebrates our 65th year of ministry here. Our church was established by Caribbean pioneers, many of whom hailed from countries that were once part of the British Empire. We cannot ignore the devastating impact of the Windrush scandal on the descendants of these Caribbean migrants. Black British citizens, who had been residing in the UK since childhood, were subjected to unimaginable mistreatment and forced to prove their right to live in their own country.

We believe in God’s divine command to exhibit profound love and unwavering empathy, especially towards people who do not share the same birthplace or ethnicity as us. As Leviticus 19:34 unequivocally declares, The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the Lord your God.”

As a church, we stand united with numerous others in challenging the government’s hostile approach towards refugees and migration. We are well aware of the detrimental impact that both rhetoric and policies can have on individuals seeking safety and security in their lives.

Also included is an excerpt from the 2015 International Conference of The Wesleyan Church which unanimously agreed upon:

The members of The Wesleyan Church petition governments to promote Godly principles in refugee policies:

  1. 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.
  2. 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.