The Diocese of Des Moines

Four IA dioceses issue statement on immigration reform — 

Des Moines Bishop Richard Pates, who is among the four Iowa bishops issuing a statement today through the Iowa Catholic Conference urging immigration reform, said issues of justice, human dignity and the rule of law must override political considerations that could derail progress on immigration reform.


Bishop Pates said: “The question of reforming our immigration system is before us. In determining how we proceed, we must reflect on the longstanding teachings of the Catholic Church. This is a very critical time as we look at reform in terms of justice, human dignity and the rule of law. We must put these issues above political considerations and look at options that serve the common good of the American people.”


Below is the full statement from the Iowa Catholic Conference.

 

Iowa Catholic Bishops Statement on Immigration Reform
August 14, 2013


Once again, Congress is considering the reform of our country’s broken immigration system.
Many immigrants have been forced to leave their most basic needs of themselves and their families. The desperation of their circumstances does not correspond to the inordinate length of time (sometimes over 15 years) required to wait in line for the present system to process a visa request.


We believe that those already here, for the sake of family unity and being humane, should receive special consideration that would include eventual citizenship. We support measures that help secure our border but respect human rights and human life. We need a system that is humane for workers and fair to employers.


While Catholics may disagree within the limits of justice on the specific approach to reforming the immigration system, we must agree as a people of faith to live out the scriptural commandment to “welcome the stranger” and defend the God-given dignity of every person.


We urge all Iowans to remember their history as immigrants as we work together towards a fair and compassionate resolution of this problem. We encourage members of the Catholic community to contact their members of Congress this month, especially in the House of Representatives, in support of immigration reform legislation consistent with the principles of justice. One easy way to do this is visit www.justiceforimmigrants.org and send a message to your member of Congress to encourage him to move the process forward.


Most Rev. Michael Jackels, Archbishop of Dubuque
Most Rev. R. Walker Nickless, Bishop of Sioux City
Most Rev. Martin Amos, Bishop of Davenport
Most Rev. Richard Pates, Bishop of Des Moines

 

Declaración de los Obispos de Iowa sobre la Reforma Migratoria
Una vez más, el congreso esta considerando la reforma del sistema de inmigración de nuestro país ya que está considerado no efectivo.


Muchos inmigrantes han tenido que dejar sus casas  y sus países para poder proveer con las necesidades más básicas para sus familias. La desesperación de su situación no corresponde con la espera excesiva de tiempo (a veces más de 15 años) para poder procesar una solicitud de visa.
 

Creemos que los que ya están aquí, por el bien de la unidad familiar y por humanidad, deben recibir una consideración especial que pueda incluir una opción para la ciudadanía. Apoyamos las medidas que ayudan a proteger la seguridad de nuestra frontera, siempre y cuando se respeten los derechos humanos y la vida humana.  Necesitamos un sistema que sea humano para los trabajadores y justo para los empleadores. 
 

Mientras que los católicos estén en desacuerdo  con los límites de la justicia sobre el enfoque específico de reformar el sistema migratorio, debemos estar de acuerdo como pueblo de fe para vivir el mandamiento que se nos da en las escrituras de “acoger al extranjero” y defender la dignidad humana que  Dios nos ha dado.
 

Les pedimos a todos los residentes de Iowa que recuerden su historia como inmigrantes conforme vayamos trabajando juntos por una solución justa y compasiva a este problema.  Animamos a los miembros de la comunidad católica a contactar a sus representantes del congreso en este mes, especialmente a la cámara de representantes para que apoyen la legislación para una reforma migratoria coherente con los principios de justicia. Una manera fácil de hacerlo es visitar la página www.justiceforimmigrants.org y enviar un mensaje a su representante en el congreso para animarle a apoyar el proceso.  
 

Excelentísimo Michael Jackels, Arzobispo de  Dubuque
Excelentísimo R. Walker Nickless, Obispo de Sioux City
Excelentísimo Martin Amos, Obispo de Davenport
Excelentísimo Richard Pates, Obispo de Des Moines


The Diocese of Des Moines includes 81 parishes in 23 counties in central and southwest Iowa.

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