IAUSA Irish Apostolate

Update on the Catholic Campaign for Immigration Reform  

Issue: # 122
January 30, 2016

In This Issue
Transition in the IAUSA
IAUSA to hold Annual Meeting
The Moral Urgency of Immigration Reform
Supreme Court to take up Obama Immigration Actions
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PRAYER: O God, we praise and thank you for the life of St. Brigid. She gave to the Christian world the foundations of education for the laity and the opportunity for women of Ireland to use their energies and intellect in a way previously not open to them. An "ascetic with a smile," she helped lay the foundations of a golden age of learning and missionary endeavor. May she continue to be a beacon of light and courage to all women who labor to lead others to the freedom of the gospel. We ask this in Jesus' name. Amen.


Transition in the Irish Apostolate USA
Last week the Board of the Irish Apostolate USA
met in Washington, DC to outline plans for the coming year.

Mrs. Geri Garvey, who has been the IAUSA Administrator since January 2005, is retiring from most of her administrative duties.  Mrs. Garvey will continue to oversee the Irish Outreach Ocean City, which assists the Irish students in the J-1 visa Summer Work Travel program, for the coming year.  Pat and Rick Fairbend will continue their coordination of the local outreach in Ocean City.

Mrs. Garvey has enjoyed working with her colleagues and volunteers at the Irish Immigration Pastoral Centers and Outreach Networks.  She has been inspired by the energy, dedication, and commitment shown by the Irish and Irish-American staff and volunteers whom she has interacted with over the years.

The Board welcomed Sr. Marie Prefontaine, SNDdeN, as the new Coordinator for the Irish Apostolate USA.  Sr. Marie brings a lot
 of expertise and experience working with immigrant communities from her work in the Archdiocese of Boston, the Diocese of Worcester, and in the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Refugees office at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. 

Sr. Marie holds a BA in Theological Studies from Emmanuel College, Boston; a MA in Religious Studies from LaSalle University, Phildelphia, PA.; and a STL from Weston Jesuit School of Theology, Cambridge, MA.  

Sr. Marie will focus much of her efforts in the coming year in supporting the Boards of the IAUSA member centers with resources in governance, management, and fiscal accountability.  Sr. Marie will be contacting the staff at the member centers in the next few weeks.

There will be a press release from the IAUSA National Office in the near future with more details.
IAUSA to hold Annual Meeting 

IAUSA Irish Apostolate
The Irish Apostolate USA will hold its' Annual General Meeting in conjunction with
the Coalition  of Irish Immigration Centers Training Conference the week of
May 16, 2016 in Washington, DC.

Invitations with more details will be sent to the Chaplains and Executive Directors of the IAUSA Member Centers in the near future.

The Moral Urgency of 
Immigration Reform

By Archbishop Josť H. Gomez
Archdiocese of Los Angeles
The new year began with a new wave of government raids targeting immigrants from Central America and Mexico. About 120 were rounded up for deportation -- mostly women and children, many of whom had come to the U.S. fleeing violence in their home countries.

The raids are yet another depressing sign of the failed state of American immigration policy.

After nearly a decade of debate, everyone agrees that our immigration system is broken and needs comprehensive reform. But year after year slips by without a solution. In the vacuum created by polarization and inaction, deportation has become our government's "de facto" policy.
The case before the Supreme Court is about executive actions taken in November 2014 by President Obama that would halt deportations for three years for undocumented people who have been in this country for at least five years or who have a child who is a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident.

I am not a constitutional scholar or a political leader. But as a pastor I see every day the rising human toll of our failed immigration policies, especially on families and children.

The immigrants in our communities came to this country with hopes and dreams for a better life for their children. They are no different from the generations that came before them, such as the Irish and Italian families depicted in the film "Brooklyn," which is up for an Oscar this year.

Most of the 11 million undocumented people in the U.S. have been here for five years or more. About two-thirds have been here for at least a decade.

This is why our failure to enact comprehensive reforms is so cruel.

Read the entire article here.

 Supreme Court to take up Obama Immigration Actions 

 On January 19, 20statue_of_liberty.jpg16, the Supreme Court announced that it will decide the fate of President Barack Obama's immigration actions this term.

The actions are aimed at allowing millions of undocumented immigrants to apply for programs that could make them eligible for work authorization and associated benefits.

The President unveiled the programs over a year ago, but federal courts blocked implementation in response to a challenge brought by Texas and 25 other states. Since then, the nearly 4.3 million immigrants who would have been eligible have been caught in legal limbo.

The Supreme Court - which already has a docket bursting with consequential issues - will likely rule on the case by early summer.   
If the Court greenlights the programs that are considered a centerpiece of the President's second term, they will go into effect before he leaves office.

At issue is the implementation of the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) aimed at the approximately 4.3 million undocumented immigrants who are parents of U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents, as well as an expansion of the 2012 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) targeting teenagers and young adults who were born outside of the U.S. but raised in the country.

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.  

The IAUSA receives financial support from the IECE and also from the DFA Emigrant Support Programme for some of its' activities and outreach.

Please visit our website for more information: 
Geri Garvey, Administrator
Irish Apostolate USA
Phone: 240-535-9205    Email: administrator@usairish.org