Religion and Relocation: How the Latin American Christian Church Impacts Migrants in Central America
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Scott, Mary Michaela
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This thesis examines a long history of Christianity in Latin America in conjunction with a more recent phenomenon: the migration crisis in Central America. It builds on a study into the history of religion and social action and uses research from primary sources and news reports to find the interaction between migrants and Christians in Central America. This thesis consists of two chapters studying a broad overview of religion and then looks at overall trends of religious interaction with migrants through public statements of religious leaders and direct actions taken by them. It includes three case studies, Nicaragua, Guatemala, and Mexico to show these trends in specific places and to draw conclusions. Through these studies, it finds that Catholic Churches tend to have more coordinated, structured efforts and more public statements, while Protestant churches tend to have more individualized approaches and localized efforts. Overall, it concludes that Christians can have great impact on individual migrants, seen through national efforts by Catholics and localized actions by Protestants.