A Church Haven for Illegal Aliens

A new sanctuary movement, which puts undocumented immigrants in protective custody, may revive the religious left

Ann Johansson for TIME

Yolanda Morales, left, and her daughter Anabella Trujillo, 17, in pink, stand in the center during the Laying on of Hands and Prayer for them during an interfaith Sanctuary Ceremony at the Angelica Lutheran Church in Los Angeles, July 2, 2007. Morales, who arrived illegally from Guatemala 18 years ago, has been living in a studio owned by the church since she was taken in by The Sanctuary Movement.

Yolanda, who--for now--has taken the last name of Sanctuary, does not cry easily; but today is unusual. An essentially merry 52-year-old from Guatemala, a deacon in her church who is more likely to break into her favorite song (Dios Es AquĆ­) than complain, she calmly recounts the long story of bad luck and worse lawyers plaguing her 18-year attempt to get U.S. papers. She is impassive while reporting a judge's ruling that her daughter Anabella, 17, would "not be affected by my deportation." But then she recalls the sudden sense of being hunted that put her on her current path. "After...

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