Quotable: A.R. Bernard on Pastors and Undocumented Immigrants

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The Rev. A.R. Bernard is the founder, pastor and CEO of the 33,000-member Christian Cultural Center church in the New York City borough of Brooklyn. In addition to leading the megachurch, Bernard is also president of the Council of Churches of the City of New York, reportedly representing 1.5 million Protestants, Anglicans and Orthodox Christians.

Bernard spoke with Faithfully Magazine about his participation in the CNN series, “Finding Jesus” (read the story here). In addition to being asked about his thoughts on “Finding Jesus,” Bernard was asked to comment on pastors who are concerned about undocumented immigrants in the congregations.

Here is what Bernard said:

Jesus did not discriminate as to who God’s love was available for. It was open. He loved the world. I think it’s the responsibility of the church to love the world. He was also criticized for those that he helped.

So I think pastors need to be prepared to be criticized for having an open-door policy and taking up the plight of the poor, the marginalized, the disenfranchised. That is what we do. This is who we are as representatives, as ambassadors of Jesus.

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