Immigrant Integration and Religious Transnationalism

Immigrant Integration and Religious Transnationalism

The Case of the 'Highway to Heaven' in Richmond, BC

Book - 2013
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This paper draws on a case study of religious institutions on No. 5 Road in Richmond, British Columbia to explore the role of religious institutions in the process of immigrant integration. Colloquially known as the 'Highway to Heaven', No. 5 Road includes over twenty religious communities on a three-kilometre stretch of road, their location the result of a planning policy for an 'Assembly District' in the Agricultural Land Reserve. Drawing on interviews conducted with twenty-two out of twenty-four of the religious institutions as well as with policymakers and staff at Richmond City Hall from 2010 to 2012, we argue that integration is a complex term, which can be interpreted in a variety of different ways. We identify a range of different ways in which the religious institutions along No. 5 Road might define their activities as contributing to the integration of immigrants, and we discuss a range of practices that support integration. However, we argue that immigrant integration was not the primary planning objective, nor was it the main theological purpose for religious congregations. Nonetheless, we conclude that policy makers could draw on the range of activities we explore to use the road as an educational resource to promote public conversation about the intricate relationships between faith, migration, and the contested meanings of 'integration.'
Publisher: Vancouver, B.C. : Metropolis British Columbia, 2013 (Beaconsfield, Quebec : Canadian Electronic Library, 2013)
Description: 1 electronic text (62 p.) : digital file
Branch Call Number: 362.89912 Dwy

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