In early July, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement set up one of several makeshift detention centers in remote Artesia, N.M., to "manage the large influx of women with children arriving in south Texas seeking asylum from desperate conditions in Central America."
Boston Cardinal Sean O'Malley challenged all in attendance at the Knights of Columbus convention to be transforming agents in the world and to "connect the dots" between Christ and the suffering.
He was one of several bishops at the 132nd Supreme Convention in Orlando who spoke about the need for greater compassion for a flood of child immigrants to the U.S. who have arrived without a parent in recent months.
Because immigration violations are not considered crimes, people charged with being in the country without permission are not entitled to a court-appointed attorney if they cannot afford a lawyer.
American Jesuits are pushing members of Congress who were educated at the Catholic order's schools to pass aid for thousands of refugee children who have surged across the border in Texas in recent months, calling proposals to swiftly deport them "inhumane and an insult to American values."
"I ask you, as a leader, a parent, and a Catholic, to uphold an American tradition of which we are all proud," Fr. Thomas Smolich, head of the U.S. Jesuit conference, wrote to House Speaker John Boehner and 42 other House members who graduated from Jesuit high schools and colleges.
More than 100 religious leaders and activists were arrested Thursday in a White House protest aimed at halting deportations and aiding immigrants living in the U.S. illegally.
The direct action sponsored by Church World Service and Casa de Maryland, an immigration advocacy group, brought leaders from New England to Hawaii to the nation's capital.
The U.S. Park Police completed the arrests of 112 people by 3 p.m., charging each with "blocking passage" on the sidewalk outside the White House, a misdemeanor, said Sidney Traynham, a spokesman for Church World Service.
Arkansas Bishop Anthony Taylor's July 25 statement is worth the read, as he has firsthand experience of what's happening in Central America.
For the last four years I have served as a member of the Committee on Migration of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. In that capacity I visited El Salvador two months ago as part of a Regional Consultation on Migration looking into the plight of refugees fleeing violence and extreme poverty in Central America.
Young Voices: The plight of the young refugees crossing the border gets tied up with the immigration debate, and the discussion about the humanitarian crisis at hand gets lost.
Protests continue to grow around the country when it comes to housing undocumented children while they await processing.
In Rhode Island, protester Terry Gorman said, "If there was a bus coming out of there and I knew it was all illegal alien children ... I'd lay down in front of the bus. ... That's going to be the destruction of the state of Rhode Island."
I'm home from a week of lobbying in Washington, D.C., on behalf of the refugee children on our southern border. There were 13 of us, 11 from Loretto and two from our Guatemalan sister community, Sagrada Familia. We had appointments with 25 senators and representatives, plus other drop-in visits. We crossed the Capitol between the House and Senate office buildings three or four times each day.
A Latin America expert for Catholic Relief Services, the head of the bishops' migration committee and the president of a Catholic college in Michigan were among those urging the government toward humanitarian responses to a surge of children and families crossing the U.S. border from Central America.