Amherst church still providing sanctuary for Guatemalan man

Pastor says Perez participates in worship services and church programs

AMHERST, Mass. (WWLP) – Lucio Perez is one of 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States. He’s been living in this country for close to 20 years.

The 35-year-old undocumented immigrant has been staying at Amherst’s First Congregational Church since October 18, after ICE issued a warrant for his arrest.

Pastor of the church Reverend Vicki Kemper said he’s been living in an old meeting room at the church, which includes a bed, dresser, fridge and microwave.

First Congregational Church taking “leap of faith” in providing sanctuary for Perez

Pastor Kemper told 22News Perez been getting a lot of visitors from both family and friends. “We are all just falling in love with him. He’s a lovely person with a very deep faith and is inspiring us.”

She said that Perez has participated in Sunday worship services as well as other several other church programs.

Kemper told 22News that Perez will remain at the church until immigration authorities decide whether to reopen his case, adding that the process could take months.