A "Good" ByeFriends of JFON I am writing you from the back of our Justice for Our Neighbors booth at the FL UMC Annual Conference on my last full day with JFON. As you can imagine I have many emotions and a lot to finish up today before I transition to New York City. I will be continuing my missionary service as the Mission Interpreter for the Young Adult Social Justice Programs (Mission Intern and US2) at the General Board of Global Ministries with the UMC. I am excited to carry and share the stories of Young Adult Missionaries and the communities they serve, but I will deeply miss the community I have made here in central Florida and with JFON.
However, the main emotion I feel today is a combination of excitement and joy I cannot fully describe. A few hours ago we found out President Obama will make an announcement today outlining “deferred action” for DREAMers. This will STOP deportations of DREAMers and provide eligibility for work authorization! (We are still learning the actual implications and language that will be used) I was met with hugs, tears, and high fives from board members and volunteers at Annual Conference. Though many did not understand, this good news was even announced on the floor of Annual Conference I am told.
I want to thank each of you! Days like today are what we work for at Justice For Our Neighbors and should be celebrated. A special thank you and congratulations to all of our DREAMers sharing their stories and volunteering with JFON! And each of you that hosted a DREAM Sabbath event, signed a petition, made a phone call or told a friend about the DREAM Act or JFON.
This is an important step. And I am blessed to celebrate it in Florida on my last day as Education and Advocacy Coordinator. As we celebrate, know this does not happen alone. I hope you will continue your strong support of JFON because it takes all of us caring about our migrant brothers and sisters to find solutions to our messy immigration system.
Lina, our immigration attorney and Marilyn will work with our volunteers and JFON board to keep up the good work and I pray that you will continue to support them in this tireless effort and celebrate together on days like today!
Humbled and with incredible joy, THANK YOU JFON FAMILY for changing my life as you change our clients’ lives!
JFON Education and Advocacy Coordinator
Photo: Marilyn Beecher, Hannah Hanson, Paloma Acosta and Colleen Abel (L to R) celebrate and share information on JFON at the UMC Annual Conference, Lakeland Florida.