Mother facing deportation given sanctuary by North Carolina church

Juana Tobar Ortega (NBC News)
Juana Tobar Ortega (NBC News)

(WXII/NBC News) A North Carolina grandmother has taken sanctuary inside a Greensboro church to avoid being deported.

Speaking through a translator to a standing room only crowd Wednesday, Juana Tobar Ortega said she hopes her sanctuary inside the church will not be for long.

“I have hope to return to my home soon, to be able to hug my children, my grandchildren and to be with my family,” Ortega said through a translator.

The 44-year old mother of four will live in a small room inside the church.

“There is no reason for her to be deported. She is a neat woman, all she did was go to help her daughter, that any one of us would do,” said St. Barnabas Episcopal Church’s Reverend Randall Keeney.

Juana Tobar Ortega fled Guatemala seeking asylum in the United States 24 years ago.

She returned home to care for a sick child, violating her immigration status. During her last visit to the Immigration And Customs Enforcement office in Charlotte she was ordered out of the country.

More: http://bit.ly/2rlCoJp

KXAN.com provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s