IAUSA Irish Apostolate

Update on the Catholic Campaign for Immigration Reform  

Issue: # 97  October  2013
In This Issue
IAUSA Annual Meeting
Bishop Kirby Visits Chicago
Oireachtas Delegation Comes to DC
Updates from the Hill
Toolkit for BIA Recognition
Free Friday Webinars
Quick Links 


Current Articles 

A Nation of Immigrants by 

Rep. Judy Chu 




The Irish- US Economic Relationship 2013




Other Links 


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IAUSA Annual Meeting
Most Reverend John Kirby, Bishop of Clonfert and Chair of the Irish Episcopal Council for Emigrants,
met with members of the Irish Apostolate USA at their annual meeting on September 27-28 in the NYC metro area.  
Attendees included Fr. Brendan McBride, President, IAUSA, Celine Kennelly, ED, IIPC - SF; James Cummins, SIISG -Seattle; Bernadette Cashman, ED - Irish Outreach and Fr. Nick Clavin - San Diego; Sr. Christine Hennessy, Project Irish Outreach, Yonkers; Kathleen Rohnan, Manager, IIPC - Boston; Paul Dowling, Social Worker - CIIS - Chicago; Geri Garvey - IAUSA Administrator, and Joanna Joyce, Emigrant Officer, IECE.

Fr. McBride announced that one of the pastoral priorities for the IAUSA this year was to strengthen the relationship between the IAUSA and the IECE.  In furthering this effort, the IAUSA and IECE Boards will hold a joint meeting on December 23, 2013 in Maynooth, Ireland.    Those present from the IAUSA will have an opportunity to highlight the work that is being done at the IIPCs and Outreach offices in the USA and to inform the Bishops of the challenges that are faced by recent emigrants.   Additionally, they will have an opportunity to discuss pastoral care for Irish emigrants in the next decade.

The Irish Bishops are very interested in the new waves of emigrants as they have different profiles than earlier emigrants from the 1950s and 1980s.   The IECE would also like to better prepare people for emigration based on the information they receive from the Centers in the USA.

At the IAUSA annual meeting, members had an opportunity to share the highlights and challenges of their work with the Board. One of the biggest challenges is that of fund-raising.   Each Center is required to fund-raise to meet expenses, but everyone agreed it is also very time consuming for staff and volunteers.

Bishop Kirby expressed his appreciation of the work done on behalf of Irish emigrants by the IAUSA members.
SAVE THE DATE - November 13, 2013
JFI National CALL-IN Day to Congress


The Justice for Immigrants
campaign has announced a national Call-In Day to the House of Representatives on Wednesday, November 13, 2013.
This date is the Catholic Feast Day of
Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini, the Patron Saint of Immigrants.  
The JFI Committee thought this was a perfect opportunity for supporters of immigrants to raise our voices on their behalf. 




On that day, callers will hear a short recording instructing them to give the following message to their Member of Congress: 


"Support a path to citizenship and oppose the SAFE Act."


After the recording, callers will then be prompted to enter their zip code on their telephone keypad and will be connected directly to their Representative's DC office.


Bishop Kirby Visits Chicago! 

After meeting with the IAUSA members, Bishop Kirby, Joanna Joyce and Geri Garvey flew to Chicago for a pastoral visit to the Irish community there.  At a dinner that evening they met with Fr. Michael Leonard and the Board and Staff of the Chicago Irish Immigrant Support office.  


The following morning the Bishop celebrated Mass for the Irish Community at the Irish American Heritage Center.  Cyril Regan, President of the Board of CIIS, presented the Bishop with a book on the world-famous Chicago architecture.  Bishop Kirby also met with Francis Cardinal George, OMI, Archbishop of Chicago during his stay.


Cyril Reagan, Bishop John Kirby,
Fr. Michael Leonard



Members of the Chicago Irish Community

Oireachtas Delegation comes to DC

An all-party delegation from the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs & Trade spent two days in Washington in late October and participated in a round of meetings regarding the situation of the undocumented Irish in the US and on future visa access for Irish people.


Pat Breen TD, Chairman of the Committee,
Gerald Nash TD, Sean Crowe TD and Senator Mark Daly met 16 members of the House of Representatives, mainly Republicans, whose support on the issue of immigration is essential, as well as senior White House officials.


Ambassador Anne Anderson hosted a working dinner where the delegation consulted with leaders of key Irish-American community groups.  Representatives from the ILIR, Chicago CELTS, AOH, and IAUSA were among those present.  The delegation also attended President Obama's White House speech on Thursday, October 24th in which he urged Congress to act on immigration reform by the end of the year.


Chairman Breen said: "We have been greatly encouraged by our visit. We are satisfied from our meetings with Congressmen, including Paul Ryan and Republican Whip Kevin McCarthy, that despite recent difficulties, a will exists on both sides of the aisle in the House to resolve this issue. We look forward to early adoption of bi-partisan legislation that would resolve difficulties of the undocumented and provide future flows of visas for Irish people who want to live and work in the United States."


       Updates from the Hill

April Rally w Kelly and MarieOn October 2, Rep. Joe Garcia (FL-26) introduced the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act (HR - 15) in the House.  This bill is very similar to the Senate bill S. 744 that was passed in April.  This bill requires FEWER  boots and LESS fencing on the Border than the Senate bill.


At the time, although pleased with the bill, the consensus was that it wasn't going to go anywhere.  It was just a Dem's bill on CIR.  Well, after the shutdown in DC and the internal struggles among the Republican party, there are now 3 brave Republicans who have signed on to the bill:


Rep. Jeff Denham (R- CA 10)

Rep. Ileana Ros-Lentinen (R- FL 27)

Rep. David Valadao (R- CA 21)


These Republicans have received a lot of pressure from their constituents to do the right thing on immigration, and they have listened to them.  To encourage more Republicans to sign-on and/or to have them pressure House Leadership to bring a bill to the floor, WE NEED TO KEEP UP THE PRESSURE.     It is working!!


Please continue to contact your Member of the House to ask that an immigration reform bill be brought to the floor for a vote.  CONTACT YOUR FRIENDS AND RELATIVES THAT LIVE IN REPUBLICAN DISTRICTS, WHERE THE ASK IS EVEN MORE IMPORTANT!!


The Capitol Switchboard no. is 202-224-3121 and you will be connected to your Representative - or you can ask to talk to Boehner, Cantor, or McCarthy's office.


A guide to HR-15 can be found on the Immigration Policy Center's website.  

Toolkit for BIA Recognition


Does your nonprofit agency want to develop a legal immigration program, but lack attorneys on staff or the money to hire them?  


Does your nonprofit agency want to continue providing legal immigration services, but avoid engaging in the unauthorized practice of law?    


Does your nonprofit agency have immigration attorneys on staff, but want to expand its capacity by getting authorization for non-attorney staff to practice immigration law?



The Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. (CLINIC) has designed this toolkit  to educate agencies on the need for BIA recognition and accreditation and to assist them in the application process.  It is divided into four sections:

  • Section One provides background information about the importance of BIA recognition and accreditation. 
  • Section Two takes you through the steps needed to prepare for and compile the application. 
  • Section Three provides guidelines on the professional code of conduct for BIA accredited representatives and information on how to protect your agency from liability.
  • Section Four focuses on the widespread problem of immigration fraud and provides resources for educating the immigrant community.   

This toolkit is available online on their website





November 1, 8, 15, and 22 at 2:00-3:30 pm Eastern / 11:00-12:30 pm Pacific


These webinars are for immigrant and social justice advocates, legal service providers, faith leaders, community organizers, and others working with and on behalf of immigrants and will address the following important issues:



Comprehensive Immigration Reform 2013-2014:

The Road Forward from the Church's Perspective

Friday, November 1, 2013



Recent Trends in State and Local Immigration Enforcement

Friday, November 8, 2013



Immigration Detention: Perspectives from D.C. and the Field

Friday, November 15, 2013



State and Local Immigration Laws: Recap of 2013 and Outlook for 2014

Friday, November 22, 2013




After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information on joining each webinar. 




Join the Justice for Immigrants Campaign

The Justice for Immigrants Campaign continues to build its grassroots support for comprehensive immigration reform.  
If you want to be notified of immigration legislation updates , NOW is the time to join the JFI Action Alert list.  Sign up at: 
The Irish Apostolate USA is the umbrella organization for the Irish Immigration Pastoral and Outreach Centers in the United States, under the direction of the Irish Episcopal Council for Emigrants. 

Please visit our website for more information: 
Geri Garvey, Administrator
Irish Apostolate USA
Phone/Fax:  301-384-3375     Email: administrator@usairish.org