Immigration documentaries share the realities faced by our newest neighbors


The Great Plains Conference’s Mercy & Justice team –  together with Justice For Our Neighbors-Nebraska, Nebraska Appleseed and Kansas Appleseed – is inviting you to screenings of two immigration documentaries at different locations in our conference. The directors of the documentaries will be present. 

‘Trails of Hope and Terror’

A movie based on this book will be
shown in Gering, Nebraska, as well as
in Wichita and Dodge City, Kansas.
The Rev. Dr. Miguel A. De La Torre will screen his documentary, “Trails of Hope and Terror,” which focuses on exploring the historical and economic reasons for the current immigration crisis and how politicians have used this issue to garner votes.  The film also explores how some communities of faith are responding to the crisis. The documentary is based on the book with the same name.

De La Torre is professor of social ethics and Latino/a studies at the Iliff School of Theology in Denver.  He served as the elected 2012 president of the Society of Christian Ethics and currently serves as the executive officer for the Society of Race, Ethnicity and Religion.  De La Torre is a recognized international Fulbright scholar who has taught at the Cuernavaca Center for Intercultural Dialogue on Development (Mexico), Indonesian Consortium for Religious Studies (Yogyakarta), University of Johannesburg (South Africa) and has taken students on immersion classes to Cuba and the Mexico/U.S. border to walk the migrant trails. De La Torre has received several national book awards and is a frequent speaker at national and international scholarly religious events and meetings. He also speaks at churches and nonprofit organizations on topics concerning the intersection of race, class and gender with religion.

The film will be shown:
  • Friday, May 8 – 6 p.m. at First United Methodist Church, 900 O St., Gering, Nebraska
  • Saturday, May 16 – 2 p.m. at Pleasant Valley United Methodist Church, 1600 W. 27th St. North, Wichita, Kansas
  • Sunday, May 17 – 3 p.m. at First United Methodist Church, 210 Soule St, Dodge City, Kansas
To see the trailer, go to
Learn more about this film.

‘The Second Cooler’
This documentary will be shown in
Omaha and Lincoln in Nebraska and
in Topeka and Leawood in Kansas.

Ellin Jimmerson will screen the film “The Second Cooler,” which is a migrant justice documentary for English- and Spanish-speaking audiences that unravels why 12 million Latin American migrants are in the United States illegally and brings basic immigration issues into focus. Those issues include the impact of free trade agreements on migration, the lack of a legal way for poor Latin Americans to come to the United States, the inherent abuses of the guest worker program, the fact that many migrants are indigenous people, anti-immigrant politics, the reality of thousands of migrant deaths at the border and an escalating ideology of the border. The documentary raises the question: “Who benefits?” from illegal migration.

Jimmerson earned a master’s of arts in southern history from Samford University, a Ph. D. in U.S. history from the University of Houston, and a master’s of theological studies from Vanderbilt Divinity School with a concentration in Latin American liberation theology. She is minister to the community at Weatherly Heights Baptist Church in Huntsville. She writes, speaks and preaches on the intersection of history and faith and is a prominent advocate for undocumented migrants, guest workers, and domestic laborers. She is the author of numerous published essays and articles.

The documentary will be shown:
  • Thursday, May 7 – 7 p.m. at St. Paul United Methodist Church, 5410 Corby St., Omaha, Nebraska
  • Friday, May 8 – 7 p.m. at Trinity United Methodist Church, 7130 Kentwell Lane, Lincoln, Nebraska
  • Saturday, May 9  2:30 p.m. at Countryside United Methodist Church, 3221 SW Burlingame Road, Topeka, Kansas, and at 6:30 p.m. at Church of the Resurrection, 13720 Roe Blvd., Leawood, Kansas.
The trailer for the documentary is available at
Learn more about this film.

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