Advocating for justice is part of the essence of who we are at Arch Street United Methodist Church. Some of the key issues we maintain active and passionate involvement with include the following (click to learn more):
What is Sanctuary?
When you enter the large space where the members and friends of the Arch Street United Methodist Church (ASUMC) worship each Sunday at 11am, you are entering the sanctuary – the space designed and designated for sacred service and inclusive community building. It is a place of first, second, third and unending chances at enacting redemption, reconciliation and restoration on all levels of human experience
The word sanctuary has several synonyms: refuge, haven, harbor, oasis and shelter. Obviously, Sanctuary is so much more than the dimensions of some physical space. Sanctuary is a timeless tabernacle of trust. It is the last place someone goes seeking justice during a period of personal plight or a season of systemic oppression. So, whenever and wherever then world’s systems of governance violate basic human rights, deny due process and operate to privilege the powerful; a universal system of sacred resistance based on the rule of love arises. Sanctuary arises from empathy not imperial edict; arises from the spirit of the law not the letter of the law and arises from the uncommon courage of the oppressed to resist evil and demand justice. Sanctuary is a spiritual designation not a religious or political statement. Sanctuary is a way of living out a sacred covenant to seek justice, love kindness and walk humbly.
ASUMC is a Sanctuary that has so many dimensions. In particular, ASUMC is a Sanctuary for Javier Flores who is classified by the world’s systems as an undocumented immigrant from Mexico but who in the tradition of Sanctuary is called by God to be an individual of sacred worth seeking justice for himself his family and for so many others like him. In this sense, Javier embodies the spirit of Sanctuary – is Sanctuary. We and the entire world would do well to learn from him.