ORUCC is a Sanctuary Church – see what we are up to!

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New Post:  September 26, 2018

In an effort to remain supportive to all those who are undocumented in our community, the Sanctuary Mission Team is offering the following:

Upcoming Educational Sessions on October 7 & 14 at 9 a.m.
 Attorney Reluca Vais-Ottosen from the Community Immigration Law Center (CILC) and her colleagues will discuss the current immigration situation in Madison and possible projects in which the ORUCC congregation could be involved. Come join us for what promises to be an engaging discussion!
Compassion Offering for month of October 2018 – Community Immigration Law Center (CILC)
The compassion offering for the month of October will be for the Community Immigration Law Center, Inc. (CILC).  CILC provides information, support, and attorney referrals to low income, undocumented immigrants. CILC is based at Christ Presbyterian Church in Madison and is an initiative sponsored by a coalition of legal, social, and faith-based organizations.


AUGUST 1, 2018.  From our Sanctuary Mission Team

Recent events, with the increasing possibility of our hosting a person in sanctuary, have prompted a number of noteworthy activities:

We held a successful letter-writing campaign with congregants signing 70 letters each to Representative Pocan, Senator Baldwin, and Senator Johnson. Our letters make the case for a humane and just immigration policy. Thanks to Ruthanne Landsness, who hand delivered our letters to each office.

Centro Hispano, Voces de la Frontera, and representatives from Dane Sanctuary Coalition host congregations met recently with Maria Portugal, a mom being threatened with deportation, to assess accepting her into sanctuary. Dane Sanctuary and Centro Hispano determined that Orchard Ridge would be put forward as the first sanctuary site, if asked.  Our Leadership Team followed up and agreed to accept Maria and her 3-year-old daughter into sanctuary should they seek it. Two other hosting congregations did likewise.

Centro, Voces, and Dane Sanctuary held a July 24 news conference to publicize Maria’s plight. She, her 12-year-old son, and others spoke passionately about the effects of being threatened with deportation. Many Orchard Ridge congregants attended. (see video of this press conference here)

Dane Sanctuary Coalition’s Community Resources Team is finalizing a volunteer data base; it will be used to schedule all volunteers for on-site hosting needs, once we know what those needs are. ORUCC also completed a resource manual so our on-site hosts have the information they need to offer hospitality and security to our person in sanctuary.

An orientation for Orchard Ridge on-site hosts is planned for Sunday, August 19 @ 11:15 – 12:45. Agenda: scheduling software, resource manual, walk-around, and Q & A. Please email Baxter Richardson baxter.2614@charter.net if you’re interested in being an on-site host. (NOTE: this orientation will not include meals, transportation, and other volunteers. Stay tuned; we’ll be offering more orientations in the future.)

The Ministry of Christian Witness and Service will dedicate a compassion offering to Community Immigration Law Center, an immigrant rights group of attorneys working to protect those at risk of deportation. Look for this offering in October 2018.


Sanctuary Mission Team Members

Marv Beatty, Marty Bero, Winton Boyd, Susan Cary, LuAnn Greiner, Kathi Kemp, Ruthanne Landsness, Carol Prugh, Baxter Richardson (chair), Susan Watson, Jill Westberg


Past Post:  On June 18, 2017, ORUCC voted to become a sanctuary congregation.  At that time we made a commitment to engage in support, advocacy and service to our undocumented brothers and sisters.

At the core of this commitment is our offering of safe sanctuary to an individual or family who may be facing deportation. Until we host a guest we won’t have all of the details of what will be needed. What we do know however is that we will need a core base of volunteers to carry out the logistics of supporting that individual or family.

We are also a founding member of the Dane Sanctuary Coalition   – an interfaith effort to create as many sanctuary sites as possible in Dane County.  Members of our Sanctuary Mission Team serve on the Steering Committee and other work teams of the larger coalition.

This site will list events sponsored by both the Dane Sanctuary Coalition and our congregation.

Questions – contact Baxter Richardson or Winton Boyd




WE ENCOURAGE YOU TO FILL OUT THE VOLUNTEER SURVEY (see link above).  This will give us contact information for upcoming trainings and advocacy efforts.

Orchard Ridge UCC/ Madison Mennonite Sanctuary Mission Team includes:

Baxter Richardson – baxter.2614@charter.net

Marv Beatty – mtbeatty@wisc.edu

Jill Westberg – jillwestberg@gmail.com

Kimberly Miller – kamiller2@gmail.com

Susan Watson – susanjanepilates@gmail.com

Susan Cary – susan@carysign.com

Marty Bero – martybero@gmail.com

Ruthanne Landsness – ruthanne.landsness@gmail.com

LuAnn Greiner – greinerlu@gmail.com

Winton Boyd – winton@orucc.org

Ian Aley – ian.aley@gmail.com

Kathi Kemp – batonrouger2@yahoo.com

Megan Bjella – mbjella@gmail.com

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