Minerva Garcia becomes the second person to take sanctuary in North Carolina to avoid deportation.

Garcia, an undocumented immigrant who came to Winston-Salem from the Mexican state of Guerrero 17 years ago so that her blind son could attend a school that met his needs, took sanctuary at Congregational United Church of Christ in Greensboro at 10 a.m. today, according to a press release issued on her behalf. Garcia received an order from US Immigration and Customs Enforcement to leave the country by the end of the month.

Garcia’s oldest son Eduardo, who is blind, is now 21, and is a DACA recipient. Her youngest sons, Antonio, 6, and Matteo, 3, are joining her at  Congregational United Church of Christ.

“Minerva and her family are our neighbors, whom we are called to love,” said the Rev. Julie Peeples, the pastor at Congregational United Church of Christ. “As the faith community, we are doing what Congress has refused to do: protect immigrant families from an immigration system that is separating families and deporting people who are woven into the fabric of their communities and congregations.”

In late May, Juana Luz Tobar Ortega, an undocumented immigrant from Guatemala, took sanctuary in St. Barnabas Episcopal Church, also in Greensboro, to avoid a deportation order.

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