When I was asked last spring if I’d be interested in participating in a class which would study local migrations, I was thrilled.   Since I am majoring in “Latin American Studies”, my immediate thoughts gravitated towards the consistently-increasing, local Mexican and Puerto Rican population. As I continued to ponder the direction this study might take,  I had the opportunity over the summer to visit with a number of people throughout Morris from a variety of ethnic backgrounds, including Norwegian, German, Irish, Finnish, Jamaican, Haitian, Cuban, Dominican, Venezuelan, South African, Colombian, Mexican, Russian, Latvian, Chinese, and Nicaraguan.   Everyone took great delight in sharing stories of their heritage with me and many expressed pride in the unique ethnic diversity found in our rural Midwestern community.   On the other hand, there were also those who, unfortunately, indicated their resentment toward the recent  influx of Hispanic “immigrants”.    While I disagree those sentiments, I can acknowledge and empathize with the complexity of the situation and the feelings of negativity, distrust, and animosity.    However, I made an interesting observation as I talked with people about their heritage and ethnicity.  To me, it seemed that those whom possessed a greater and more detailed knowledge of their own family’s histories were those which were more open to embracing ethnic diversity.  Perhaps, I am wrong.  Nevertheless, it caused me to think about this project in a different light.  It was at that point that I began to think about what it is that connects the current migration of Mexican and Puerto Rican peoples to specific moments and people groups of past migration within Stevens County.   I believe that connection exists in the migration of the Apostolic Christian church.   A vast majority of Hispanics living in Stevens County today are here because they have been contracted as temporary immigrant workers on TN, H2B, H2A, or H1B visas to work in either the agriculture or manufacturing industries created, owned, and/or operated by people of the Apostolic faith.  I hope that by drawing this connection and demonstrating the similarities between the migration and lives of these two people groups, that it will enable those struggling to embrace change to look beyond current rhetoric and consider “immigration” from a different point of view.   By illustrating the migration history of the Apostolic people, Joy and I will demonstrate that we are all products of migration and that as migrants or descendants of migrants, we don’t have to change who we are or what we believe in, in order to respect and appreciate other people groups and cultures in our community.