Catholic World News

Cardinal Dolan urges House to address immigration reform

November 08, 2013

Describing immigration reform as “a matter of great moral urgency that cannot wait any longer for action,” the president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops urged the House of Representatives to “address the issue as soon as possible, ideally prior to the end of the calendar year.”

“As pastors, we witness each day the human consequences of a broken immigration system,” said Cardinal Timothy Dolan in a November 7 letter to House Speaker John Boehner. “Families are separated through deportation, migrant workers are exploited in the workplace, and migrants die in the desert. In their attempts to respond to these human tragedies, our priests, religious, and social service providers in many cases are unable to help these persons without changes to the law.” “To be sure, Church teaching supports the right of sovereign nations to protect their borders,” he continued. “In our view, immigration reform would protect that right and restore the rule of law while upholding the human rights and dignity of the person.”

“As a moral matter, however, our nation cannot continue to receive the benefits of the work and contributions of undocumented immigrants without extending to them the protection of the law,” Cardinal Dolan added.

In a 68-32 vote, the Senate passed immigration reform legislation in June; Cardinal Dolan said that the bill, “although not perfect, improves upon the status quo.”

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  • Posted by: Minnesota Mary - Nov. 09, 2013 11:29 PM ET USA

    How much $$$ is it that the USCCB gets from the government for resettling immigrants? Follow the money when you follow the bishops.

  • Posted by: - Nov. 09, 2013 12:08 PM ET USA

    I agree with Lucius' points. This situation is complicated and calls for a prudential judgment as to which reasonable and sincere Catholics can disagree. Let's start by avoiding euphemisms like "undocumented" in place of "illegal."

  • Posted by: Lucius49 - Nov. 08, 2013 10:12 AM ET USA

    I don't think Catholics can be obliged to support a particular bill about which citizens differ. A blanket statement that illegals don't enjoy the benefit of the law begs the question of a law they are flouting and a nation's right to control its borders and provide for the common good of citizens. Moreover illegals enjoy the benefits of many laws just by being in the country. Prior im laws were not being enforced and the border not protected. Moreover this law is designed to benefit one party.