Introduction

Credit: Jesse Epp-Fransen/MCC

The year 2013 brought many challenges.

From Syria we continued to get ever-worsening news, as the conflict spread.

Four years after the devastating earthquake that hit Haiti, more than 100,000 Haitians still do not have permanent housing.

Immigration reform, after passing the Senate in June, has stalled in the House with no clear prospects for movement. The Obama administration, which could decrease the deportation of undocumented immigrants even without legislation, has declined to do so.

But there were hopeful signs too.

Grassroots pressure on Congress was a significant factor in leading the U.S. to back away from military strikes against Syria.

After decades of civil war in Colombia, a peace process has resulted in an agreement on several major concerns and talks are continuing.

The U.S., along with five other nations, reached an agreement with Iran on its nuclear program.

Attorney General Holder announced significant reforms to the mandatory minimum sentencing policies that have led to so many in the U.S. being locked up–disproportionately affecting communities of color.

This issue of the Memo takes us through these and other developments of the past year. Through it all we are grateful for your faithfulness to God’s call to provide a prophetic witness on these matters of life and death for so many of God’s children.

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