IAUSA Irish Apostolate

Update on the Catholic Campaign for Immigration Reform  

Issue: # 106 July 2014
In This Issue
Congratulations to:
Immigration Reform in 2014
What Do Irish Organizations Abroad Want
National Migration Conference 2014
IBIC Urges President and Congress to Act
Advocates Grade Congress on Immigration
Quick Links 


Current Articles 


Unaccompanied Minor Children Resource Kit





Obama will take Executive Action on Immigration after summer, Adviser says

Christian Science Monitor




President Obama Should Go Big on Immigration Reform

Huffington Post





Obama Mulls Large-scale Move on Immigration

Associated Press




Other Links 


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         The Irish Apostolate USA Board

Fr. John Madigan who celebrated his 40th Anniversary of Ordination to the priesthood with a Mass on July 20th. The 
Mass was also a Memorial for his 93-year-old mother, Margaret Madigan, who died in Ireland on May 10.  In 1974, Fr. John was the last Irish-born priest to come to the Seattle Archdiocese directly after Ordination and he has been involved in area's Irish community ever since, even playing Gaelic Football with the Seattle Gaels in his younger days. 
In February 2012, the Irish Bishops and Seattle's Archbishop jointly officially appointed Fr. John as Chaplain to Seattle's Irish Community.



Billy and Anne Lawless, who became US citizens on July 10th, took the Oath of Allegiance to the United States of America and registered to vote - all in one day! 


Billy and Anne own some of the most loved restaurants and pubs in Chicago including the Gage and Henri on Michigan Avenue, the Dawson in River West and the Irish Pub in Wrigleyville. Billy has worked tirelessly for many years on immigration reform as Chair of the Chicago CELTS for Immigration Reform, and last year as a Board member and co-founder of the Illinois Business Immigration Coalition





The Tufts Health Plan Foundation announced last week that it awarded more than $1.6 million in new grants to 43 Nonprofit organizations based in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, for its 2014 grant cycle.  The Coalition of Irish Immigration Centers (CIIC) is proud to be one of the grant recipients for its Irish Senior Connect program.


The phone number for Irish Senior Connect is 855-249-5146.

For more information, please contact Susan Doody, Irish Senior Connect Coordinator, at 



          Immigration Reform in 2014???

One of the National Migration Conference's workshops focused on the need for Immigration Reform and the message to the audience was clear. Experience with immigration legislation in the past has demonstrated that it takes years of hard work and effort to have an immigration bill passed in Congress.  Each failure that we have lays the groundwork for future successes.  We still may have an opportunity to get smaller reforms done at the end of 2014. WE HAVE TO BE PREPARED for this opportunity in the Lame-Duck session of Congress.  


We were told not to give up; that immigration reform is worth the effort; if not this year, we will be laying the groundwork for the next Congress.


We must continue to keep our networks informed of what steps they can do to be involved.  Congress will be on Recess from August 4th - September 5th and will be in their districts.  Encourage your networks to call, email, or better yet - visit their Representatives and Senators to let them know that immigration reform is still important to them - and to the 11 million undocumented.  if they don't hear from us, they will think we don't care!


The Justice for Immigrants campaign will have an Action Alert during the Recess and I will pass this information on to you.





Responding to inaction in the House on immigration reform, Obama has signaled to immigrants' rights advocates that he plans to take significant new executive actions next month to overhaul the immigration system. They could range from reordering the priority list of deportation cases to dramatically expanding the "deferred action" program he initiated in 2012, which allows immigrants who entered the U.S. illegally as children to apply for a two-year deportation reprieve.


That could mean allowing millions of family members of so-called DREAM-ers to get work permits, or perhaps allowing giving work permits to even broader groups, such as undocumented immigrant parents of U.S. citizens or virtually everyone who's not considered a high priority to deport.

Read more:



          What do Irish Organisations Abroad want from the new Diaspora Minister?

One comment from the article:


Immigration Reform

Joanna Joyce, Emigrant Officer, Irish Bishops' Council for Emigrants


Through its centres and outreaches, the Irish Apostolate USA sees daily the difficulties facing the 50,000 Irish undocumented immigrants living in the US, who are unable to travel home to visit family or to attend weddings or funerals. Immigration reform would enable them to come out of the shadows and to contribute actively as members of their local community. Emigrants today still face many of the same challenges as previous generations, and some struggle with feelings of loneliness and isolation. Through its chaplaincies overseas, the Irish Bishops' Council for Emigrants

is aware of the high rates of depression, drug and alcohol abuse and suicide affecting Irish communities abroad. Emigrants must be supported both prior to and following their departure so that they are adequately prepared for the experience and can reach out for help when they need it.

To read the entire article, go to the Irish Times.


National Migration Conference 2014


This year's National Migration Conference drew over 800 attendees to Washington, DC during the week of July 7-11, 2014.  The Conference was sponsored by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, the Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. and Catholic Charities USA.

A few of the excellent presenters were: 

Cardinal Oscar Andres Rodriguez Maradiaga, Archbishop of Tegucigalpa, Honduras; Senator John McCain - R-AZ; Frank Sharry, Founder and Executive Director, America's Voice;Luis CdeBaca, Ambassador-at-Large, U.S. State Department, plus many others. 


On Thursday, over 400 advocates went to Capitol Hill to hold meetings with their Senators and House Members to discuss the continuing need for immigration reform

and the plight of unaccompanied children and the need for a humane solution to this crisis.



Illinois Business Immigration Coalition Urges President and Congress to Act

From their press release:

"The surge of tens of thousands of Central American minors crossing the Mexican border into Texas is a serious humanitarian crisis that requires our government's attention. As a nation, we must protect the children and provide them with legal representation, food, shelter and healthcare.   These business leaders have been working together to urge Congress to fix our nation's broken immigration system, and urge the President and Congress to act quickly to address this serious problem. It is clear that addressing this crisis in a wise, humane, and productive manner is necessary before serious comprehensive immigration reform, which a majority of businesses and voters from both parties support, can advance.

The IBIC urges Congress to pass immigration reform in 2014 that secures the border, creates a functioning visa system allowing safe, orderly, and legal immigration for the needed agricultural, high skill and low skill workers, and a path to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants already here. Immigration reform legislation can also contain important anti-smuggling anti-trafficking measures and other important provisions to help address the root causes of the current unaccompanied minors crisis."


Advocates Grade Congress on Immigration

Frustrated by lack of action and unfulfilled promises on the immigration overhaul front, a coalition of 10 advocacy groups is out to hold House members accountable for the extent to which they were unhelpful to the cause.


A new scorecard for all 435 members' immigration votes, statements and co-sponsorships aims to draw a stark portrait of "who stands with us and who does not," said Hispanic Federation President José Calderón. The rankings come as Congress nears a boiling point on an emergency funding request from President Barack Obama intended to mitigate the crisis at the border as children cross illegally into the United States.

The first-of-its-kind scorecard was released Monday, as advocates gathered a stone's throw from the Capitol for the grand unveiling, calling for action and scolding lawmakers for what they see as stonewalling on a critical issue.

To read the entire article, go to Roll Call.



The Library of Congress recently released  a new iteration of  Congress.gov that provides users with the tools to create private accounts, track nominations, save searches and more deeply search the Congressional Record.


The private accounts will enable users to eventually subscribe to email alerts on bills, members of Congress and the Congressional Record.



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