Some clergy still concerned about immigration law
But Pruett, pastor of St. Peter Catholic Church in Guymon, said the law still engenders widespread fear among immigrants in hisTexas
He said the anxiety level is such that Hispanic immigrants are continuing to leave Guymon in droves.
“With the possibility of being discovered, there is fear,” Pruett said.
House Bill 1804, authored by Rep. Randy Terrill, R-Moore, became law on Nov. 1, 2007. The law makes it a felony to knowingly transport illegal immigrants, creates barriers to hiring illegal immigrants and requires proof of citizenship to receive certain governmental benefits or a driver’s license.
Terrill could not be reached for comment for this posting.
Meanwhile, aTulsa newspaper recently reported that the law has resulted in three arrests and one conviction.
Still, the Rev. Perla Martinez-Goody, an associate pastor at San Mateo Fellowship, a Hispanic ministry of First United Methodist Church of Pauls Valley, said many immigrants have left her city, pulling their children out of school and heading back to their native lands or other states.
She said the exodus due to fear is almost as bad as deportation.
“It’s sad to watch them dismantle their homes.”
The Rev. Leonel Blanco, pastor of Santa Maria Virgen Mision Church in southOklahoma City, began losing members as the implementation date for HB1804 loomed.
Recently the Episcopal priest said members who chose to leave the state are greatly missed because many of them had been with the ministry for a long time and were heavily involved in the church.
Blanco, originally from
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