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California bishop emphasizes he stands with Hispanics

December 13, 2016

During a recent procession in honor of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Bishop Stephen Blaire of Stockton said that “the journey of life is difficult at this time for Hispanics in the United States.”

“Many have friends and family members who are without papers; many are without papers themselves; children in school are being bullied; and young immigrants who signed up for DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) are anxious that they might lose their opportunity to work and their protection from deportation; racism has raised its ugly head in many communities; and so many of our neighborhoods and homes are plagued with violence,” he said.

Bishop Blaire added:

To all of you this day I remind you that OUR LADY OF GUADALUPE COMES TO MEET YOU TO LEAD YOU TO JESUS. She says to each of you what she said to St. Juan Diego: “Do not be disturbed in your heart; do not be afraid. Am I not with you, I who am your mother?” We need to hear these words of comfort and strength when there is so much hostility in the public conversation about immigration and immigrants.

I wish to say loudly and clearly to all of you that as your bishop I am with you. You are the Church. I will walk with you no matter how hard it gets.

Bishop Blaire also decried racism, stating, “I sincerely believe that unless God is accepted as sovereign Lord over the earth and over our lives, communities will continue to deteriorate, the earth will be devastated, and family coherence will be diminished.”

 
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  • Posted by: [email protected] - Dec. 15, 2016 9:22 AM ET USA

    Another Bishop off the rails. Does he mean a country or even a State should not have borders and control who is illegally coming into the country. The country also has a responsibility to its citizens. Oh! Let's forget that.

  • Posted by: unum - Dec. 14, 2016 11:55 AM ET USA

    Does the Bishop not know the Our Lady of Guadalupe is the patron of all the Americas? And, does he not know that Church teaching is that it is the responsibility of the civil authorities to regulate civil matters like immigration? So why condemn them for doing their duty. We, the Faithful, are approaching total confusion because of the teaching of our bishops!

  • Posted by: Ken - Dec. 14, 2016 8:07 AM ET USA

    Dover beachcomber, I believe current church leadership would call your position "rigid."

  • Posted by: dover beachcomber - Dec. 13, 2016 9:35 PM ET USA

    As a native son and lifetime resident of California, I'm alarmed by some of Bishop Blaire's views as reported here. No one I know wants illegal immigrants treated cruelly, nor their children bullied. Can the Bishop really be saying that it's sinful to wish that reasonable immigration laws be enforced?