IAUSA Irish Apostolate

Update on the Catholic Campaign for Immigration Reform  

Issue: # 117
 August  2015

In This Issue
Pope Francis Effect on Immigration
Immigration Could Get a Push
65% Favor Path to Citizenship
NETWORK's Nuns on the Bus
USCCB/JFI Immigration Convening
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Current Articles 

Birthright Citizenship: What It Is and Why We Need to 
Preserve It

America's First Anchor Baby was an Irish Girl Named Julia Lynch


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The Pope Francis Effect on Immigration:
Protecting Families and Advancing the Common Good
September 16, 2015
The USCCB Justice for Immigrants member organizations are organizing two briefings for Members of Congress and staffers on September 16 in the House in the morning and the Senate in the afternoon - in anticipation of 
Pope Francis' visit to Congress on 
September 24, 2015.

As you know, Pope Francis has been a champion for compassionate care toward migrants and refugees since he became Pontiff in 2013.  His Messages for the World Day of Migrants and Refugees reflect his concern.  To see previous messages,go to the Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc.

Panelists will address  the connections between Catholic Social Teaching and migration, life on the Southwest Border, challenges facing immigrant families, and the current legal and political landscape regarding immigration.  

  • Father Sean Carroll, SJ, Executive Director of Kino Border Initiative
  • Sister JoAnn Persch, RSM, Chicago, Pastoral Minister, operates community-based alternatives to detention of immigrants
  • Pilar Molina, DACA recipient and community leader
  • Kevin Appleby, Director of the Office of Migration Policy and Public Affairs, USCCB
  • Ashley Feasley, Director of Advocacy, Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc.
  • Sister Ann Scholz, SSND,  Leadership Conference of Women Religious, moderator 
Immigration Could Get Push From 
Pope Francis
"Despite the problems, risks, and difficulties to be faced, great numbers of migrants and refugees continue to be inspired by confidence and hope; in their hearts they long for a better future, not only for themselves but for their families and those closest to them."
Pope Francis Homily at Lampedusa, July 8, 2013

Many advocates for revamping immigration laws have tried to coax Congress into action over the years, but a particularly powerful one will be arriving next month: Pope Francis.

Lawmakers and immigration activists expect the pontiff's message will resonate beyond Capitol Hill and inspire members of Congress and their constituents. The pope's U.S. schedule includes an address to Congress on Sept. 24 and a meeting two days later with immigrants and Hispanic families at Philadelphia's Independence Mall.

"He's been clear on our failure to respond appropriately to immigrants and refugees," Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Mass., told CQ. "I don't think anyone will have any doubt on where the church stands on immigration after the pope visits the United States."

To read the entire article, go to Roll Call.

In U.S., 65% Favor Path to Citizenship for Illegal Immigrants

Two in three U.S. adults favor a plan to allow immigrants who are living illegally in the U.S. to remain in the country and become citizens if they meet certain requirements over time. Far fewer support allowing those immigrants to remain in the U.S. to work for a limited period of time (14%), or to deport all of these immigrants back to their home countries (19%). U.S. adults' views have been largely stable over the past decade.
The latest update comes from Gallup's 2015 Minority Rights and Relations poll, conducted June 15-July 10. The poll included larger samples of blacks and Hispanics. Immigration is of special significance to Hispanics, about half of whom are immigrants themselves, according to the poll.

U.S. adults' views on the best approach to take with illegal immigrants living in the U.S. differ based on their party identification. At 80%, Democrats overwhelmingly favor allowing illegal immigrants to stay in the U.S. and to have an opportunity to become citizens. Republicans are far less likely to support a path to citizenship, at 50%, but that is still the most common view among this group. Thirty-one percent of Republicans want to see all illegal immigrants deported, while 18% favor allowing them to stay for a limited time to work.

Neither party's views have changed dramatically over the past decade, but Democrats are now a bit more likely to endorse citizenship while Republicans are less likely to do so. The 31% of Republicans who favor deporting all illegal immigrants is up from 20% in 2006, while the percentage of Republicans favoring a path to citizenship is down from 58% to 50%. In 2006, President George W. Bush favored legislation that included a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants.

There has been a 10-point increase since 2006 in the percentage of Democrats who favor a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants.

To read the Poll results, go to Gallup Poll.
NETWORK's Nuns on the Bus  
NETWORK's Nuns on the Bus  will be headed on the road in advance of Pope Francis's trip to the United States. Their theme is to call on everyone-including Congress-to bridge divides and transform politics.
They're kicking off in Saint Louis on September 10 and will visit Kansas City, Topeka, Fayetteville, Little Rock, Memphis, Nashville, Evansville, Indianapolis, Cincinnati, Columbus, and Wheeling before arriving back in DC on September 22, just in time for the Pope to touch down at Joint Base Andrews. The bus will remain in DC for the duration of Pope Francis's time in the city. They will keep you posted about DC events as they develop! 

Event details can be found on their website:   

 Moving Forward: 

Immigration in 2016 and Beyond

JOIN the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and Justice for Immigrants at the upcoming National Convening:

Wednesday - Friday, November 11-13, 2015 
Four Points Sheraton Hotel at O'Hare Airport 
Chicago, Illinois

Conference begins at 4 pm on November 11 and concludes at noon on February 13.

Conference costs:

 $250/double (shared) room; $350/single room - prices include two nights lodging, all meals, conference materials, reception, shuttle to/from O'Hare.

$150 for local attendees (not needing lodging); $75 for one day attendance  Includes meals, conference materials, reception and free hotel parking.

Register for the conference at http://bit.ly/1LrZ6Vg

Join the Justice for Immigrants Campaign

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: 240-535-9205    Email: administrator@usairish.org