Official Church Position–
The complex issues surrounding immigration are a matter of increasing concern and debate for all in this country.
Elected individuals have the primary responsibility to find solutions in the best interests of all whose lives will be impacted by their actions.
We repeat our appeal for careful reflection and civil discourse when addressing immigration issues. Finding a successful resolution will require the best thinking and goodwill of all across the political spectrum, the highest levels of statesmanship, and the strongest desire to do what is best for all of God’s children. (see statement)
Official Church Statement–
“Church Supports Principles of Utah Compacton Immigration”
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints issued the following statement of support today following the announcement of the Utah Compact, a document backed by a broad spectrum of community leaders:
As a worldwide church dealing with many complex issues across the globe, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints promotes broad, foundational principles that have worldwide application. The Church regards the declaration of the Utah Compact as a responsible approach to the urgent challenge of immigration reform. It is consistent with important principles for which we stand:
- We follow Jesus Christ by loving our neighbors. The Savior taught that the meaning of “neighbor” includes all of God’s children, in all places, at all times.
- We recognize an ever-present need to strengthen families. Families are meant to be together. Forced separation of working parents from their children weakens families and damages society.
- We acknowledge that every nation has the right to enforce its laws and secure its borders. All persons subject to a nation’s laws are accountable for their acts in relation to them.
Public officials should create and administer laws that reflect the best of our aspirations as a just and caring society. Such laws will properly balance love for neighbors, family cohesion, and the observance of just and enforceable laws. (see statement)
Marlin K. Jensen–
Immigration questions are questions dealing with God’s children…I believe a more thoughtful and factual, not to mention humane approach is warranted, and urge those responsible for enactment of Utah’s immigration policy to measure twice before they cut. (Jensen, Marlin K. Interfaith Dailogue on Immigration at Westminster College, Feb. 13, 2008)
This new world hath been the asylum for the persecuted lovers of civil and religious liberty from every part of Europe. Hither have they fled, not from the tender embraces of the mother, but from the cruelty of the monster; and it is so far true of England, that the same tyranny which drove the first emigrants from home, pursues their descendants still. (Paine, Thomas Common Sense, 1776)
Strangers are welcome because there is room enough for them all, and therefore the old Inhabitants are not jealous of them; the Laws protect them sufficiently so that they have no need of the Patronage of great Men; and every one will enjoy securely the Profits of his Industry. But if he does not bring a Fortune with him, he must work and be industrious to live. (Franklin, Benjamin Those Who Would Remove to America, February 1784)
[L]et the poor the needy and oppressed of the Earth, and those who want Land, resort to the fertile plains of our western country, the second land of Promise, and there dwell in peace, fulfilling the first and great commandment. (Washington, George letter to David Humphreys, July 25, 1785)
[T]he policy or advantage of [immigration] taking place in a body (I mean the settling of them in a body) may be much questioned; for, by so doing, they retain the Language, habits and principles (good or bad) which they bring with them. Whereas by an intermixture with our people, they, or their descendants, get assimilated to our customs, measures and laws: in a word, soon become one people. (Washington, George letter to John Adams, November 15, 1794)
Born in other countries, yet believing you could be happy in this, our laws acknowledge, as they should do, your right to join us in society, conforming, as I doubt not you will do, to our established rules. That these rules shall be as equal as prudential considerations will admit, will certainly be the aim of our legislatures, general and particular. (Jefferson, Thomas letter to Hugh White, May 2, 1801)
- Official Church Position
- Church Supports Principles of Utah Compacton Immigration, Nov. 11, 2010
- LDS Church urges more compassion for immigrants, Deseret News, Feb. 2008