Continue Supporting Jose Juan, Father of 5,in sanctuary at University Church

Jose Juan Federico Moreno, a father of 5 United States citizen children, is currently in sanctuary from deportation in University Church, a member and Immigrant Welcoming Congregation of CRLN, on Chicago’s South Side.

Jose Juan had been given until Friday April 15, 2016 to leave the country and ‘self-deport.’ When in front of a judge, he received a ruling from the court determining that his removal would constitute hardship on his children. However, ultimately, the court denied his appeal, because he could not provide a ten-year old pay stub or other proof of residence that dated back more than nine years.

Jose Juan came to the attention of ICE in 2009 after he was pulled over and charged with an "aggravated" DUI while driving home from work--"aggravated" only because he did not have a license, something unavailable to undocumented immigrants at the time. Despite giving discretionary relief in similar cases, ICE is using the “aggravated” charge to insinuate that the incident was much more serious than it was and to justify his deportation. The Chicago ICE office denied the request to postpone separation from his family using prosecutorial discretion, leaving him no option but to take sanctuary in University Church.

Before going into sanctuary, Jose Juan said, “Leaving my children behind is not a choice I can make. That’s why I’ve asked for sanctuary in this church, I’ve lived here for 15 years, I have built a life here. My children are all citizens, and my wife could qualify for DAPA. All I am asking for is a chance to see my children grow and support my family.”

Last Monday, University Church held a Prayer Vigil with Jose Juan. 180 community members, religious leaders, and members of the faith community stood with Jose Juan, filling the Sanctuary!

A special thanks to Rev. Vertie Powers, Associate Conference Minister of the Chicago Metropolitan Association of the Illinois Conference of the United Church of Christ, Rev. Linda Eastwood, Rev. Alli Baker, Rev. Drew Rindfleisch, and to the members of University Church for their help with this powerful event . 

There are three things YOU can do to support Jose Juan and his family:

1. Sign this petition for faith leaders and faith communities by Rev. Julian DeShazier from University Church to stop Jose Juan's deportation.

2. Consider making a donation to Jose Juan and his family here. All funds will go to his family and will help them stay in their home and keep their children in school while Jose Juan is in sanctuary fighting his case. 

3. Continue to build awareness, attend & invite others to attend Organized Ccommunities Against Deportation's Community Night with Jose Juan and his family. The event will be this Wednesday, May 4th, from 6:30-8 PM at University Church (5655 S. University). For more details click here.