What if the Holy Family were separated at Christmas?

(Photo: Posada at the Border, Agua Prieta/ Douglas)

Posada at Border

Posada Toolkit- Immigrants’ Rights

Table of Contents

State of Play on Immigration

History of Posadas

Creative Theatre

Communications Resources

Lifting Your Posada Nationally


State of Play on Immigration 2013-2014

The movement for immigrants’ rights continues to grow. The faith community has been an especially important voice in lifting up the moral imperative of welcoming our immigrant brothers and sisters. Over the last year we have held thousands of congressional meetings, phone calls, letters, vigils, marches and actions to push for just and humane immigration reform. In many ways, we have already won, capturing the public support in polling by a large majority, passing a bill in the Senate, and securing enough votes for a pathway to citizenship in the House of Representatives, if we were given a vote today. Unfortunately, the House leadership has refused to bring up immigration for debate. Under President Obama we have seen nearly two million deportations, over 200,000 parents of U.S. citizen children deported just in the last two years. As Congress delays, many are also working to push the Obama administration to move forward with expanding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program for all eligible undocumented immigrants regardless of age.

At the end of 2013 we must continue to send the message that our movement will continue to grow and faith communities will continue to work for immigrants’ rights and pressure Congress as well as the Obama administration to make our immigration policy consistent with the moral imperative to welcome our neighbors. The Posada tradition is an excellent way to raise awareness and lift up how our faith traditions recognize the Holy family’s journey to Bethlehem, their experience of finding no room at the Inn, and the powerful reality that  Christ was given unto us in a lowly stable.


History of Posadas in the Context of U.S. Immigration Policy

Las Posadas in Latin America is a Christmas tradition celebrating the Nine Days of La Posada (The Lodging) from 16 December to Christmas Eve. The yearly tradition commemorates the journey of Mary, Joseph, and the unborn Jesus as they traveled from Nazareth to Bethlehem looking for lodging. On each of the nine evenings, town members and choristers carry torches, banners, or paintings of The Holy Family as they walk from home to home seeking shelter. At a pre-selected house, the door opens to all with an invitation for refreshments, caroling and dancing, and scriptural readings. The celebration re-enacts the ancient journey and symbolizes the welcome of Jesus into the home and one’s heart.

So, it is this re-enactment of Las Posadas that can help us retell the story of immigrants sojourning to new life. It can remind us of those who continue to cross geographic borders, psychological barriers, and social boundaries in search of newness of life, justice, and safety. Like Mary and Joseph, immigrants often are met with rejection, misunderstanding, and prejudice. So as people of faith we are called to welcome others who may knock at our “doors.”

If you are doing a Posada please let us know at as we are tracking and mapping how many great Posadas are happening across the country.

Posada Toolkit- Immigrants’ Rights

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