SAN ANTONIO -- Pastor Gavin Rogers has been traveling with this caravan of Hondurans who are hoping to become refugees in the U.S.
“That they can give their kids an education, that they can be free from violence and rape and murder and it sounds extreme but that is exactly what is going on here,” said Rogers.
Rogers is an associate pastor with Travis Park United Methodist Church located downtown. He’s been traveling with a group of about 6000 people, many of whom are families with small children and are pushing strollers. Sometimes the group gets lucky and can hitchhike on semi-trucks.
Many are telling Rogers they are trying to escape corruption and violence in Honduras.
“I have met people on this trip that have had their children kidnapped or possibly been murdered, their cousins and older brothers have been killed,” Rogers said.
Rogers says these folks won’t seek asylum in Mexico even though it’s offered there.
These people are fearful of an unstable Mexican government coupled with gangs and cartels, they don’t think staying there is safe.
“It says in our Old Testament texts to treat refugees like your blood and, so I am not interested in the politics. I’m interested that we as people can learn to embrace the immigrant,” Rogers said.
This group of migrants are being assisted by Mexican police, the United Nations and church groups. It will most likely take several weeks for this caravan to reach the border.
Rogers says the caravan is headed towards Tijuana and some of them have family here in the United States already.
Others are hoping to meet with immigration lawyers so they can legally apply for refugee status before coming across the border.