Hillsong NYC pastor Carl Lentz is calling on the church to love and pray for refugees after President Donald Trump's executive order to temporarily ban refugees from the United States.
While thousands of protesters across the nation have rallied together to voice their disapproval of Trump's order that halts the United States' entire refugee resettlement program for 120 days, Lentz says it's the church's job to look after refugees, not the government's.
"We can have opinions about who we vote for. We can have opinions about policies and law making procedures. We cannot, however, have opinions about who we love. 'The least of these' are not an option, they are not an afterthought, they are not a hindrance ... they are the lifeblood of the gospel and how we respond to the hurting, is perhaps the greatest indicator of what we really believe ... may we not be found wanting," Lentz wrote in a Facebook caption to a video in which he addresses his congregation on the matter.
"We're going to stand together and we're going to pray for the refugees. We're going to pray for the ostracized. We're going to pray for those that have nowhere else to go, nobody to put a roof over their head, nobody that would open the door," the young and edgy minister declared.
He advised those visiting his church that he was not at all trying to be political but instead he called the issue a "family thing."
"It's the government's job to create laws to protect our country. We do need reforms, we do need things to change, but it's the church's job to love," he continued. "It's the church's job to not see where you're from, to not see the color of your skin, to not see what you have in your possession — to love you simply for the fact that we have been loved."
Worship leader and son of Hillsong Senior Pastor Brian Houston, Joel Houston also shared his heart on the refugee order with a picture on Instagram. The picture was of a young boy in Lebanon reaching out for the hand of someone else.
"My friend @joetermini took this photo last year in a refugee camp on the Lebanese / Syrian border. I'll never forget these kids, these families. My heart breaks that many of them maybe thinking we have forgotten them. Or that we feel the same way as a few who obviously have never got the memo that there is no fear in love," Houston stated.
The Hillsong NYC worship pastor revealed that he originally wrote a lot more on the post but then deleted it, as he hopes to share more at another time. Houston ended his post claiming that banning refugees will not make the world safer.
"But I'll say this, banning refugees does not make the world, America, Australia, Europe any safer. Not one bit. Love doesn't make it safer either. Not immediately. But Love makes it better. And Love does and is able to do far more than we could ever dare imagine, if we dare to trust it. Much love," he concluded.
Although many people are up in arms over President Trump's decision to implement this ban, conservative news outlets have pointed out the hypocrisies in their concern noting that the Obama administration took greater precautions regarding visitors and immigrants from countries of concern. They maintain that the hysteria is being instigated by mainstream media.