News Detail
Jesuit scholastic Ben Anderson
Jesuit Scholastic Organizes Pilgrimage to Highlight Need for Immigration Reform

December 30, 2013 — Rather than wait on the sidelines and simply hope that politicians act on immigration reform, Jesuit scholastic Ben Anderson and 75 clergy, faith leaders and immigrant families hit the streets and made a six-day Pilgrimage for Citizenship in the Twin Cities last month.

Anderson, who is currently working as a community organizer with ISAIAH, a faith-based organization in St. Paul, Minn., helped coordinate the 36-mile walk that included stops at six churches and ended at Congressman Erik Paulsen’s (R-Minn.) office.

“God made each day easier as pilgrims shared their stories, gained support at churches and were blessed with renewed determination,” Anderson wrote in a reflection. Catholic Charities, ISAIAH and more than 15 congregations representing five denominations supported the pilgrimage.

The pilgrims shared stories of how families had been torn apart due to the current immigration system. "Everyone deserves full dignity and everyone deserves to live and raise their families without fear, and we need to provide that by creating a pathway to citizenship," Anderson told a local TV news station.

An immigrant named Ivan, 19, told the group, “Every day I fear coming home and finding them gone. I cannot imagine what it would be like to suddenly find my parents deported, leaving me to care for my two younger brothers. This kind of thing happens in my community. We need citizenship now.”

“Citizenship is necessary not only to stop the tremendous suffering caused by our broken immigration laws but also to give a democratic voice to 11 million aspiring voters in our community,” Anderson wrote.

The pilgrimage ended with the group celebrating Mass in the parking lot of Rep. Paulsen’s office. A smaller group then prayed the rosary inside the office building after requesting to speak with Rep. Paulsen in order to ask him to support a pathway to citizenship.

“We planned to remain in the office until he met with us,” Anderson wrote. However, the police were summoned and the group was forced to leave. “We left in prayer, unable to risk more deportations and broken families,” Anderson wrote.

“When I look into the eyes of these pilgrims and witness their sacrifice for the common good, I see a bright future for our churches and for our country,” Anderson wrote. “There is a moral crisis, and these immigrants have the determination and courage to transform it. Members of Congress, and many of us who are citizens, have something to learn from these pilgrims. We need to follow their lead, face this moral crisis and work together to pass a pathway to citizenship this year.” [Source: MinnPost, ISAIAH]

 


Recent News

March 27, 2015 — Last month, Jesuit provincials from Canada, the U.S., Central America and Mexico visited the Kino Border Initiative in Nogales, Mexico.

March 26, 2015 — Jesuit novices are serving the poor and the homeless at the Morning Glory Café as part of their novitiate experiments.

March 24, 2015 — “La Voz del Pueblo” is told from the perspective of journalists at a Jesuit-run radio station.

March 23, 2015 — Cheverus High School in Portland, Maine, has named Jesuit Father George E. Collins to succeed current president, Jesuit Father William R. Campbell.

March 20, 2015 — Thirteen schools are partnering with Jesuit Refugee Service/USA to help unaccompanied Central American children and immigrant families seeking refuge in the U.S.

March 19, 2015 — Jesuit Refugee Service marks 35 years of accompaniment.

March 18, 2015 — Jesuit Father Richard Clifford was recently honored for his service to the Boston College School of Theology and Ministry.

view all news

Search news

Publications
Since St. Ignatius bought a printing press in 1556, the Jesuits have been involved in communications. Today the Society of Jesus publishes a number of award-winning journals and publications. Click below to access our latest issues.

America - 3/30/15

America - 3/23/15

America - 3/16/15



Sioux Spiritual Center
The Sioux Spiritual Center, nestled amid the hills of western South Dakota, is the heart of the Diocese of Rapid City’s efforts to develop native clergy and leadership on the reservations.