Society of Jesus Calls for Comprehensive Immigration Reform
(Washington, D.C., May 13, 2013) — In letters to President Barack Obama and the U.S. Congress, the nine provincials of the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) in the United States are calling for comprehensive and humane immigration reform. More than 200 Jesuit communities, affiliated organizations, parishes and institutions are also lending their support to the provincials’ appeal.
Provincials are leaders in the Society of Jesus, an order of priests and brothers founded in 1540, responsible for colleges, middle schools and high schools as well as parishes and ministries that practice a faith that promotes justice. The provincials’ letters to Congress and the president urge that any proposed immigration reform include a path to citizenship for all undocumented immigrants as well as a legal employment structure protecting both migrants and U.S. workers, expedited family reunification and an end to policies that exacerbate family separation. The letters to Congress and the Obama Administration follow a similar appeal made by the provincials in 2011.
“The immigration debate provokes emotion on both sides of the aisle and we hope that our elected officials can rise above partisan politics,” said Jesuit Father Thomas H. Smolich, president of the Jesuit Conference. “Because of our commitment to educating the children of migrants in our schools, serving migrant communities in our parishes and offering men, women and children food and shelter on the border, we see firsthand the costs of current immigration laws. We’ve been calling for reform for many years, and we’ve never been closer. We pray that Congress considers the future of 11 million people hanging in the balance.”
The letter is the most recent action by the Jesuits supporting immigration reform. Earlier this year, the Jesuit Conference, the Kino Border Initiative and Jesuit Refugee Service/USA released a new study, “Documented Failures: The Consequences of Immigration Policy on the U.S.-Mexico Border,” highlighting excessive use of force, particularly dangerous deportation practices and abuse of migrants attempting to cross the U.S.-Mexico border by U.S. Border Patrol agents. Jesuit Father Sean Carroll, executive director of the Kino Border Initiative, testified at a congressional hearing on the report in April.
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(Washington, D.C., June 1, 2016) — This month, the Society of Jesus, better known as the Jesuits, the largest order of priests and brothers in the Roman Catholic Church, celebrates the ordination of 15 new priests in the U.S. Four more are being ordained in Haiti and one in Canada.
(Washington, D.C., February 4, 2016) — The Jesuits of Canada and the U.S., in collaboration with nonprofit media company Loyola Productions, recently released a dramatic and artfully-produced new video highlighting the vocation of Jesuit brothers. The video commemorates the closing of the Year of Consecrated Life, which ended on Feb. 2, 2016, and can currently be viewed at jesuits.org.
(Washington, D.C., January 5, 2016) — The Jesuit Conference denounces the Obama Administration’s decision to conduct nationwide raids on people who have fled Central America seeking protection over the last year.
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